Citizens Advice Scotland has called for a higher statutory minimum wage rate and a crackdown on employers who refuse to pay their workers the legal minimum.
The call comes in a submission to the Low Pay Commission, which has called for evidence on the issue.
Publishing the submission today, CAS Social Justice spokesperson Mhoraig Green said, “Even before the covid-19 crisis, Citizens Advice Bureaux in Scotland were already seeing people who were struggling on low wages. Workers receiving National Living Wage (NLW) still had budgeting struggles, through a combination of high costs, low wages, and limited and unpredictable social security support.
“The pandemic has made matters even more difficult, demonstrating again how little security low-paid work offers. We’ve seen a jump in the proportion of advice on employment and Universal Credit in the last few months, despite significant efforts by government to support those affected.
“Gaps in support have left many relying on crisis grants and food parcels, with newly negative budgets making it likely that some will sink into debt. Retail, tourism and hospitality, care, cleaning and construction are all sectors that seem particularly affected.
“So in our submission we are calling for better pay, and better conditions, for low paid workers. And we also call for a crackdown on employers who flout the law by not paying their workers the legal minimum.”
The CAS submission can be downloadad here.