Doncaster Rovers named by Government for underpaying two members of staff

Doncaster Rovers has been named by the Government as one of 239 companies which underpaid staff.

Friday, 6th July 2018, 10:33 am
Updated Monday, 16th July 2018, 3:48 pm
Doncaster Rovers underpaid two members of staff

Employers found failing to pay the national minimum wage have appeared on a Government list, with some cases stretching back seven years.

Care homes, car washes, pubs, hairdressers, football and cricket clubs are among those said to have underpaid workers.

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Around £1.4 million has been recovered in back pay for 22,400 workers, with employers fined almost £2 million.

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Doncaster Rovers Football Club was found to have underpaid two employees by £792.62 each.

Two Sheffield firms are also listed.

Ozmen Limited, in the S2 area of the city, failed to pay £5,070.35 to 19 workers, with average arrears of £266.86 per worker.

Ever Healthcare Limited, based in Hillsborough, underpaid an employee by £585.

Doncaster Rovers said the club fell foul of minimum wage obligations because one employee had asked for a larger proportion of their monthly wage be put into their pension contributions and the other did not receive backpay for a spell of work experience before they landed a permanent job.

A club spokesman said: "The first instance regards an employee who requested a larger proportion of their monthly wage be put into their pension contributions.

"Doncaster Rovers honoured the employee’s request, however HMRC have since informed the club that this resulted in the employee having a take home pay below the minimum wage amount and whilst this was at the employees request, was in fact a technical breach of obligations.

"The second instance regards an individual on unpaid work experience. The individual in question performed well in their work experience and was given a paid employment opportunity at Doncaster Rovers.

"Whilst their paid employment was at the required minimum wage levels, Doncaster Rovers were informed as the volunteer position had led to the paid employment, Doncaster Rovers should have back paid the individual for their unpaid work experience. This would not have been the case had the individual not have been offered a paid employment opportunity.

"Doncaster Rovers are committed to ensuring all employees are paid at a level suitable for the work they undertaken and we take our employment responsibilities and duty of care to staff seriously.

"We benchmark the pay and benefits package provided to all employees on an annual basis and are satisfied that we are more than a fair employer."

Business Minister Andrew Griffiths said: "Our priority is making sure workers know their rights and are getting the pay they worked hard for.

"Employers who don't do the right thing face fines as well as being hit with the bill for backpay.

"The UK's lowest paid workers have had the fastest wage growth in 20 years thanks to the introduction of the National Living Wage and today's list serves as a reminder to all employers to check they are getting their workers' pay right."

Low Pay Commission chairman Bryan Sanderson said: "It is crucial that employers understand their responsibilities and workers know their rights around the minimum wage.

"That is why active enforcement and effective communication from Government is so important.

"It is therefore encouraging to see that HMRC has recovered unpaid wages for the largest number of workers yet in this round of naming and shaming.

"I'm confident that the Government will continue to pursue underpayment of the minimum wage vigorously."

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady commented: "Minimum wage underpayment is happening on an industrial scale.

"Any worker who has been cheated deserves compensation. And their employers should be named and shamed.

"These record-breaking figures show that investing in enforcement works.

"But we know that tens of thousands more workers are still being underpaid, so government must keep the pressure on."