Hairdressers, hotels, retailers and an amusement park are among the Scottish businesses “named and shamed” by the UK Government for breaking the minimum wage law.
The breaches by the 22 companies took place between 2013 and 2018.
A total of £31,000 was found to be owed to 209 workers after investigations by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs.
The businesses have been made to pay back what they owe, and were fined an additional £46,000.
Among the companies named are J Ren Ltd, trading as Mooboo, a bubble tea shop in Glasgow’s St Enoch Shopping Centre.
It owed £3,114 to 24 workers between 2014 and 2017.
John Codona’s Pleasure Fairs Limited, which runs Codona’s Amusement Park in Aberdeen, owed more than £1,318 to 90 workers between March and November 2017.
Ian Littlewood, a member of the management team at the amusement park, said the company “do pay the minimum wage – 100 per cent”.
He added: “There was an error where we deducted the cost of a uniform from staff which was pointed out by HMRC and all monies were paid back for that but we have never not paid the full minimum wage.”
Harbour Havens Limited, which trades as Kildonan Hotel on the Isle of Arran, was named for racking up £2,478 in arrears to four workers between 2014 and 2017.
Anne Acuna, one of the company directors, said they have always paid above minimum wage and said she was “disheartened” to be named on the Government’s list.
She said the issue stemmed from paying room and board for seasonal workers as the hotel is on an island.
“They have always been paid more than minimum wage but sometimes it looks like it’s under minimum wage when you take off room and board,” she said.
“They had contracts when they came in, they knew what the room and board was, they were happy with that.
“We’ve been doing that for years when all of a sudden this comes up and we immediately stopped paying them in that fashion.
“We were caught in a situation that had no bad intention whatsoever.”
Also named were Rainbow Rooms International hairdressers in Glasgow, South Ayrshire and East Dunbartonshire, owned by Brittain & McMail Limited, Riccardo Corvi, Janine McMahon, and Fleeson & Robb Limited.
The Department for Business said minimum wage breaches can occur when workers being paid on or just above the minimum wage have deductions from their pay for uniform or accommodation.
Other breaches can involve paying the incorrect apprenticeship rate or failing to pay workers for all the time they had worked, such as overtime.
Business minister Paul Scully said: “Scottish employers can’t take their eye off the ball when it comes to upholding workers’ rights.
“There is never an excuse to short-change workers and paying the minimum wage isn’t optional.
“It’s up to all employers in Scotland, including those on this list, to check government guidance and pay workers properly.”
Chairman of the Low Pay Commission Bryan Sanderson said: “These are very difficult times for all workers, particularly those on low pay who are often undertaking critical tasks in a variety of key sectors including care.
“The minimum wage provides a crucial level of support and compliance is essential for the benefit of both the recipients and our society as a whole.”
Enjoy the convenience of having The Sunday Post delivered as a digital ePaper straight to your smartphone, tablet or computer.
Subscribe for only £5.49 a month and enjoy all the benefits of the printed paper as a digital replica.Subscribe