Friday, 23 August 2013

Extent on NMW non-compliance

The moves to further expose NMW abuses by employers are welcome and very much needed.
Of course, we must recognise that the vast majority of employers simply pay the correct NMW at the right time. This applies to about a million employees every year. Whilst it is difficult to be absolutely certain about the exact scope of non-compliance (since it cannot be captured by surveys and the perpetrators have a strong motive to conceal the truth) it is clear that non-compliance is still a major problem. Indeed, the TUC estimates that as many as 250,0000 workers could be paid less than the minimum wage per year. 
In terms of hard facts we know that for 2012/13 there were
- 1,693 complaints to the NMW helpline
- 708 employers received civil penalties. 
- HMRC were able to recover pay for 26,519 workers
- Workers were owed, on average, £300 each

HMRC hvae also started targeting internships and have made a good start, although we know the vast majority of interns fear complaining in the first place.

Arcadia and eight other firms were ordered to pay a total of 167 unpaid interns after investigation by HMRC.  The companies faced a bill for back-pay and penalties to HMRC of nearly £200,000.

Apprentices represent just 0.5% of the workforce, yet apprentices constitute 25% of NMW non-compliance notices. Evidently, there is a significant minority of employers that dodge the minimum wage for apprentices. Not only is this, forst and foremost appalling for the workers themselves, but also risks ruining the reputation of Apprenticeships at a time when we are campaigning for increased quality provision in apprenticeships.


No comments:

Post a Comment