Ministers may be acting unlawfully with minimum wage amnesty, says UNISON

‘Penalties are needed to make sure unscrupulous bosses abide by the law’

Commenting on the government’s decision today (Thursday) to extend the suspension of minimum wage enforcement in the social care sector, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said:

“Penalties are needed to make sure unscrupulous bosses abide by the law. But this extended amnesty is a green light for dodgy employers to carry on paying illegal wages without fear of ever being punished.

“In the absence of fines or the public shaming of any firm found guilty of poverty pay, the UK’s minimum wage law is being seriously undermined.

“While there may be some sympathy for charities who owe their sleep-in staff money for not paying the minimum wage when they should have been, many care providers are private equity-backed companies that can well afford to pay up.

“No government or employer should be above the law. By suspending enforcement, we have grave concerns ministers may well have been acting unlawfully and using powers they don’t have.

“It’s time ministers got tough with the minimum wage cheats, give low-paid care staff a decent pay rise and put more money into the care sector.”

Media contacts:

Liz Chinchen T: 0207 121 5463 M: 07778 158175 E: press@unison.co.uk