Convenience stores have been included on a ‘named and shamed’ list of 191 employers failing to pay workers the minimum wage between 2011 and 2018.
The list, released by HMRC, features UK franchise chains such as One Stop Stores, Martin McColl Retail, North-East Convenience Stores and Your Local Food & Wine.
An estimated 34,000 workers are set to be paid £2.1 million in owed wages by the listed employers, according to the report.
The offending companies have also been fined an additional £3.2 million as a penalty showing that it is “never acceptable to underpay workers.”
The report reveals that employers underpaid staff 47 per cent for wrongly deducted pay, such as for uniform expenses, 30 per cent for unpaid working hours including overtime and 19 per cent paid the wrong apprenticeship rate.
“Our minimum wage laws are there to ensure a fair day’s work gets a fair day’s pay – it is unacceptable for any company to come up short”, UK Business Minister Paul Scully said.
“All employers, including those on this list, need to pay workers properly.
“This government will continue to protect workers’ rights vigilantly, and employers that short-change workers won’t get off lightly.”
Chair of the Low Pay Commission Bryan Sanderson added: “These are very difficult times for all workers, particularly those on low pay who are often undertaking critical tasks in a variety of key sectors including care.
“The minimum wage provides a crucial level of support and compliance is essential for the benefit of both the recipients and our society as a whole.”