Building boss blames workers for low-wage shame

J Wood Joiners and Builders failed to pay their workers enough. Picture: Donald MacLeod

J Wood Joiners and Builders failed to pay their workers enough. Picture: Donald MacLeod

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a BUILDING boss who failed to pay the minimum wage has blamed his workers for not telling him their pay was below the legal amount.

John Wood, of Edinburgh-based J. Wood Joiners & Builders Ltd, was one of three Scots firms “named and shamed” after it failed to pay £3373.19 to four workers.

Mr Wood, 52, who is understood to live in a £450,000 house in East Craigs, said there had been an “oversight”.

He said: “The employees were labourers for us. They knew about it, but chose to contact the authorities rather than speak to us.”

Mr Wood also complained he had been punished twice after being fined and then having their name publicised.

He said: “The fine was a fair bit and it’s been paid.

“It was a mistake we regret, but it’s been rectified. I feel we have been punished twice – first with the fine and now this. We just hope this doesn’t damage our business.”

Edinburgh West Liberal Democrat MP Mike Crockart said: “I hope this sends out a message to other employers that they have a responsibility towards their workforce.”