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UK richest family accused of underpaying employees

London: The Hinduja family, recognized as the richest in the United Kingdom, has been accused of refusing to pay the workers of its company Hinduja Global Services (HGS) a “real living wage,” while its personal fortune increased by 11.5 billion pounds ($12.7 billion) in one year, The Guardian reported on Wednesday.
The “real living wage” is the wage rate voluntarily paid by more than 11,000 businesses in the UK that believe their employees deserve a salary that covers their daily necessities.
Some employees of HGS, an outsourcing company used by the UK government to run the Disclosure and Criminal Records Service, which checks potential employees, are reportedly paid 9.75 pounds ($10.7) per hour.
This rate is above the legal minimum wage of 9.50 pounds per hour but below the real living wage, which is 11.95 pounds for people working in London and 10.90 pounds for those who work outside the capital.
In addition, the newspaper reports that HGS offered workers a 3.25% pay increase in April, but this figure is below the current rate of inflation, which is 9.9%, and is expected to continue to rise in October.
“We are unhappy that we are working for an organization owned by the two richest people in the country, and yet we’re being told there’s no money. At every meeting that we have [with management] we’re told it’s tough out there for everybody and the company can’t afford it. But that is outrageous, we are owned by actual billionaires,” an HGS worker told the newspaper.
In turn, a spokesperson for HGS said that it was wrong to suggest that the Hinduja family owns the company, since “they are shareholders in HGS alongside a number of other institutional and private investors, and reference to the wealth of our shareholders has no relevance to the negotiations.” (UNI/SPUTNIK)                                                                           (Feature image credit-Forbes India)

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