EasyJet blames ‘genuine error’ after failing to pay crew minimum wage

EasyJet has said a “genuine error” was to blame after it failed to pay thousands of its staff the minimum wage.

The airline was included on a government document published yesterday (Tuesday) which named more than 500 companies which had not paid the National Minimum Wage in an investigation that spanned from 2015 to 2023.

EasyJet said a review carried out in 2018 found that during the first month of new entrant training, some of the airline’s cabin crew were being paid below the minimum wage.

The airline said it took “immediate” action to address the error and issued back payments to affected crew, who were trained between 2014 and 2019.

In total, easyJet had failed to pay £338,876.46 to 3,898 workers, placing it eighth on the list of 524 companies ordered by amount unpaid.

A spokesperson for the airline said: “This was a genuine error which we immediately rectified and issued back payments to all affected crew.

“While all crew in this period (2014-19) were paid in line with the National Minimum Wage for their total annual salary, this review in 2018 identified a specific issue affecting our new entrant cabin crew only during their initial three-week training course, as some payments only apply once cabin crew are flying.

“EasyJet is committed to treating its people fairly, paying competitively and complying with market practices.”

The government said the companies named in the list have faced financial penalties of up to 200% of their underpayment.

Dnata catering, Center Parcs and the Radisson Hotel in Manchester were also included.

The National Living Wage is set to increase by 9.8% to £11.44 an hour on 1st April, as announced in November’s Autumn statement.

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