Newham Mayor wants powers to enforce national minimum wage

10:17 17 April 2014

Sir Robin Wales wants local authorities to have powers to enforce the minimum wage

Sir Robin Wales wants local authorities to have powers to enforce the minimum wage


Sir Robin Wales is calling on the government to give local authorities more powers to enforce the minimum wage.

His call comes after research revealed that almost one in five working residents in the borough take home less than £6.19 an hour.

Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales has asked for tougher action after the statistics were revealed in independent research conducted by Ipsos MORI.

The research, based on reported working hours and earnings, highlights the importance of low pay as an issue and the need to put greater emphasis on ensuring workers’ rights are respected.

Sir Robin Wales said: “Many people do not realise that there is a hidden economy operating in the UK where workers are still not receiving the National Minimum Wage. It is a disgrace that laws introduced to prevent poverty pay are so poorly monitored and enforced.

“We’re on the side of businesses that play by the rules and we will continue to work closely with them to bring new investment to the borough. However, we will come down hard on those that flout the law. Local enforcement powers would enable us to build a thriving local economy full of opportunities for our residents to get into good quality employment. However, without the national recognition that pay abuse still happens, that’s just not possible.”

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is responsible for enforcing the minimum wage. Despite evidence presented by Newham Council that the law is widely flouted, only nine prosecutions have been made nationally since 2001.

Councils work closely with local businesses on a range of issues but currently have no investigative or enforcement powers to secure compliance with the minimum wage legislation. Sir Robin Wales is calling for these powers to be devolved to local authorities, alongside tougher penalties, to enable them to take direct action and prevent local workers from being exploited.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Newham Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Newham Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Newham Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest News Stories

Caritas Anchor House marks World Homeless Day (Picture: Matt Badenoch)

A charity marked World Homeless Day with a formal event at the House of Lords.

Stephen Timms
LIONEL BART English musical composer in 1960

The life and work of talented composer and musical writer, Lionel Bart, is set to be celebrated in a star-studded performance in Stratford.

United Kingdom
Yesterday, 18:00
The London Aquatics Centre in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

Swimmers and gym-users have criticised the London Aquatics Centre for increasing its prices by up to 71 per cent in some cases.

London Aquatics Centre
Yesterday, 16:27
Councillor Charity Fiberesima from Plaistow

Tributes have poured in for a “dedicated” councillor following her death this week.

Newham Council

Most read news


Angharad Baa Stool in Rare Breed.

Great British Life is offering a sheepskin footstool worth £199 to a lucky reader

Read more
You'll be stocked up on toiletries  for a while!

Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more.

Read more
You could be splashing the cash at Topshop!

Just imagine what you could do with £1,000 to spend at Topshop.

Read more

Digital Edition

Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder