Primark and Sports Direct named and shamed for paying below minimum wage

Galtero Lara
Diciembre 8, 2017

The billionaire philanthropists in the Weston family face embarrassment after the government revealed that Primark, their discount clothing giant, underpaid 10,000 staff by more than £230,000.

PRIMARK and Sports Direct are among 260 employers who have been "named and shamed" by the Government for failing to pay staff the national minimum wage.

A Primark spokesperson said: "The average amount paid back per employee was £23.75 and relates to a workwear policy that was changed in 2016".

The businesses were ordered to distribute £1.7 million in back...

HMRC identified 16,000 workers who were owed a total of £1.7m in back pay.

Among them were 383 Sports Direct staff - short of £167,000 - after the company was at the centre of a storm over its pay, business practices and corporate governance previous year.

Fines were imposed on 260 firms for cheating the National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage rates, the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial strategy said on Friday.

A Sports Direct spokesman said: 'This matter relates to the historical situation in our warehouse that was widely publicised in 2016, for which we apologised at the time.

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The business minister Margot James said: "There is no excuse for not paying staff the wages they're entitled to and the government will come down hard on businesses that break the rules".

"We co-operated fully with HMRC to make back payments to Sports Direct staff who were affected. It has also reviewed its procedures in order to avoid this situation re-occurring".

Bryan Sanderson, chairman of the Low Pay Commission, said: 'The commission's conversations with employers suggest that the risk of being named is encouraging businesses to focus on compliance.

'It is good to see that HMRC continues to target large employers who have underpaid a large number of workers, as well as cases involving only a few workers, where workers are at risk of the most serious exploitation.

She added that the naming and shaming is done to ensure that there are consequences for these employers not only for their wallets but also for their reputation.

This year the government said it expected to spend a record £25.3 million on minimum wage enforcement.

Minimum wage rates will rise again next April, giving young workers in particular the biggest pay boost in a decade.

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