Revolution Bars Group underpays workers

By Emily Hawkins contact

- Last updated on GMT

Workers underpaid: the BBPA said there are difficulties with national minimum wage payments
Workers underpaid: the BBPA said there are difficulties with national minimum wage payments

Related tags: Revolution, Revolución de cuba, National minimum wage

Revolution Bars Group were among more than 200 employers that had not paid staff the correct wages, according to Government findings.

The group, which owns the brands Revolution and Revolución de Cuba, was included on a list of 239 employers who had underpaid 22,400 minimum wage workers.

Revolución de Cuba failed to pay £613.37 to 61 workers, with average arrears of £10.06. The Cuban rum bar chain's underpayments appear to have started in late 2014 and ended in February 2017.

Taking wage deductions for uniforms, underpaying apprentices, failing to pay travel, misusing the accommodation offset and using the wrong time periods for calculating pay were the most common ways companies had fallen foul of the law, according to HMRC.

Employers caught underpaying their staff are required to pay back wage arrears to the worker at the current minimum wage rate, and can also face fines of up to 200% of arrears, with a cap of £20,000 per worker.

Business Minister Andrew Griffiths said the Government’s priority was to ensure workers knew their rights and received the pay they worked for.

Fastest wage growth

Griffiths said: “Employers who don’t do the right thing face fines as well as being hit with the bill for back pay.

“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.”

Underpayments across all 239 employers reached a total sum of £1.44m, with employers fined an additional £1.97m.

HMRC identified a record number of underpaid workers in their list, following an increase in Government funding for minimum wage enforcement.

Complicated and sometimes unclear

British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) chief executive Brigid Simmonds said regulating the national minimum wage was a complex issue.

“The regulation of the national minimum wage is complicated and sometimes unclear, which is why we have been working with the Government and HMRC to produce guidelines to help the hospitality sector.

Simmonds said there were problems with clarity for employers on uniform costs “as items such as shoes or trousers worn at work may also be worn outside of work”.

The time period the Government requires operators to correct incorrect payments also presents a problem for operators, she said.

'Difficult for pub operators'

Simmonds said: “The current regulations are difficult for pub operators who pay their teams on a weekly basis because they currently require any incorrect payment of the national minimum wage to be corrected in just one week.”

“Clearly, greater clarification is needed from the Government and discussions to do this are ongoing. At the end of the day though, the industry needs to do all it can to work within the regulations and ensure staff are properly paid.”

Revolution Bars Group were contacted for comment but had not replied by the time of publication.

Related topics: Other operators

Related news