Published on Friday, December 8, 2017

Travel agencies shamed for under paying staff


Three travel agencies in Scotland are among 260 businesses fined for failing to pay at least the minimum wage.

The companies were identified by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in its latest crackdown.

The Holiday and Flight Centre, of South Lanarkshire, failed to pay £2,242.08 to one employee.

Moorlands Travel (Kelty), of Fife, failed to pay £2,110.8 to two workers.

B & E Travel, trading as Barrhead Travel, Fife, failed to pay £994.56 to one member of staff.

Barrhead Travel claimed its Fife franchisee underpaid due to human error.

"Once this was discovered by an independent audit, the appropriate payment was paid to the employee. We work very hard to ensure we meet all our employer responsibilities which is why we addressed the issue as quickly as possible," it said in a statement.

A number of hotels across the UK and airport ground handler Swissport was also among those prosecuted.

In total, the 260 companies have been fined a total of £1.3 million.

According to the Government department, the worst offending sectors were hospitality, retail and hairdressing.

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.

"That's why today we are naming hundreds of employers who have been short changing their workers; and to ensure there are consequences for their wallets as well as their reputation, we've levied millions in back pay and fines."

Since 2013, the crackdown has identified £8 million in back pay for 58,000 workers, with 1,500 employers fined a total of £5 million.

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