Wagamama, Marriott and TGI Friday’s top list for underpaying minimum wage

Wagamama, Marriott and TGI Friday’s top list for underpaying minimum wage

179 employers were named on the list for underpaying more than 9,000 minimum wage workers by £1.1m. The hospitality sector was one of the worst offenders, with 43 employers named for underpaying 5,726 workers a total of £460,459.

As well as recovering backpay for 9,200 workers, the government also fined the employers featured on the list a total of £1.3m in penalties.

Wagamama was highlighted for not paying £133,212.42 to 2,630 workers, while Marriott International failed to pay £71,722.93 to 279 workers. Other firms included were TGI Friday’s, which owed £59,347.64 to 2,302 workers, and Red Carnation’s Summer House Lodge, which failed to pay £6,168.48 to 24 workers.

Thomas Heier, people director at Wagamama said: “This was an inadvertent misunderstanding of how the minimum wage regulations apply to uniforms and as soon as we were made aware of this in 2016 we acted immediately to correct the position.

“In the past we didn’t realise that asking our front of house staff to wear casual black jeans or skirt, with their Wagamama branded top, was considered as asking them to buy a form of uniform and so we should have paid them for it.

“We have gladly made payments to current and previous employees who missed out dating back from 2016 to 2013. We have also updated our uniform policy and we now pay a uniform supplement to cover the black jeans.”

This 14th list comes after the government published its Good Work plan last month, which announced the right to a payslip for all workers, thought to benefit around 300,000 UK workers who do not currently get a payslip. It comes ahead of the next rate rise on 1 April, when the National Living Wage will go up from £7.50 to £7.83 per hour.

Business minister Andrew Griffiths said: “There are no excuses for short-changing workers. This is an absolute red line for this government and employers who cross it will get caught – not only are they forced to pay back every penny but they are also fined up to 200% of wages owed. Today’s naming round serves as a sharp reminder to employers to get their house in order ahead of minimum wage rate rises on 1 April.”

The hospitality companies on the list include:
• Wagamama Limited, Westminster W1F, failed to pay £133,212.42 to 2,630 workers
• Marriott Hotels Limited, Luton LU1, failed to pay £71,722.93 to 279 workers
• Thursday (UK) Limited, trading as TGI Friday’s, Luton LU1, failed to pay £59,347.64 to 2,302 workers
• Lickfold Inn Limited, trading as The Lickfold Inn, Chichester GU28, failed to pay £23,754.87 to 37 workers
• Mr Akbor Miah, trading as Dil Indian Cuisine, Monmouthshire NP15, failed to pay £7,936.78 to 2 workers
• Atkins Hotels Limited, trading as The Yorke Arms (previous ownership), Harrogate HG3, failed to pay £7,241.82 to 3 workers
• Summer Lodge Management Limited, trading as Summer Lodge Country House Hotel Restaurant & Spa, West Dorset DT2, failed to pay £6,168.48 to 24 workers
• Cost Effective Catering Limited, City of Edinburgh EH4, failed to pay £4,559.11 to 23 workers
• Simonstone Ltd, trading as Simonstone Hall Hotel, Richmondshire DL8, failed to pay £3,633.42 to 3 workers
• Thurlestone Estates Limited, trading as Thurlestone Hotel, South Hams TQ7, failed to pay £2,028.14 to 4 workers
• Mrs Angela Fox, trading as Café Express, Stockton-on-Tees TS18, failed to pay £870.21 to 1 worker
• Cragwood International Limited, trading as Cragwood Country House Hotel & Restaurant, South Lakeland LA23, failed to pay £467.78 to 3 workers
• Mr Shakil Shah, trading as Town Fryer, St. Helens WA10, failed to pay £347.31 to 3 workers
• Ari Pizza Ltd, trading as Marmaris Pizza, Ashfield NG17, failed to pay £287.8 to 2 workers
• Mr Ahmed Faalzada, trading as Pizza on Broadway, Kingston upon Thames KT6, failed to pay £266.25 to 1 worker
• Ms Fiona Latham, trading as The Wellington Hotel, Halton L24, failed to pay £233.55 to 1 worker
• Tsang’s Kitchen Ltd, Wiltshire SN10, failed to pay £221.1 to 1 worker
• Mr Nicholas Tsaroullas, Mr John Yiamokis Tsaroullas and Mrs Kyriacou Tsaroullas , trading as Mentone Hotel, North Somerset BS23, failed to pay £209.44 to 4 workers
• Mr Sean Hornby, trading as The Queens Hotel, Bury BL2, failed to pay £129.45 to 1 worker
• Riverside Pizza Company Limited, trading as La Figa, Tower Hamlets E14, failed to pay £100.83 to 1 worker


Article credit: The Caterer