Dundee Citizens Advice Bureau met with the Low Pay Commission on the 11th June 2013 to present evidence on low pay in the city.
The Commission is touring the UK to gather evidence on the issue, and requested a meeting with Dundee CAB. The CAB social policy team consisting of volunteers Kamila Torkaska and Tess Wakeling, and BroadCAST Project Manager Mairi Buchanan compiled a report highlighting issues in Dundee, which the Low Pay Commission representatives found extremely beneficial. You can download the report from the foot of this page.
The CAB report reveals that 20% of all employment cases it deals with are related to pay and entitlements. Over half of those affected by low pay issues are under 34 years old, and that nearly 60% are women.
Mary Kinninmonth, Director, Dundee Citizens Advice Bureau said:
"These clients are often low paid, relatively low skilled, often unaware of their employment rights, and are vulnerable to poor and illegal employment practices. The recession has created a situation in which these poor practices are more common. Employees will often put up with poor employment practices for fear of losing their job and frequently will accept radical changes to their pay and hours rather than face a tough labour market. Whereas some employers will try to cut corners and slash costs in order to stay afloat.
"It is a difficult economic situation for both employers and employees. However, it is in the interests of both that the employment rights of workers are enforced. Poor employers can make life miserable for their employees, but they can also distort the playing field through unfairly reduced costs and put good employers under pressure to do the same".
Labour market reports show that Dundee City has the second lowest employment rate in Scotland at 61.7%, and whilst Dundee is not the highest LA area for youth unemployment, employment rates for 16-24 year olds are still low, falling between 45%-55%.
The team worked with Lucy from the Community Action Team on this project – if you would like to find out more about the support on offer for local policy work, please see below for information on the Community Action Team.