HC Deb 24 February 1999 vol 326 c344W
Mr. Burden

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment (1) what guidance he has issued to(a) job centres and (b) other parts of the Employment Service on their role in monitoring the introduction of the national minimum wage; [71496]

(2) whether job centres will be permitted (a) to process and (b) to display job vacancies notified to them at pay rates below the national minimum wage. [71497]

Mr. Andrew Smith

Responsibility for the subject of the question has been delegated to the Employment Service agency under its Chief Executive. I have asked him to arrange for a reply to be given.

Letter from Leigh Lewis to Mr. Richard Burden, dated 24 February 1999: As the Employment Service is an Executive Agency the Secretary of State for Education and Employment has asked me to reply to your two questions concerning the Employment Service's preparations for the introduction and monitoring of the National Minimum Wage and whether the Service will advertise jobs at a wage below the legal minimum. These are issues which fall within the responsibilities delegate to me as Chief Executive of the Agency. We have already issued guidance to Jobcentres and other relevant parts of the Agency that from 1 April they must only process and display vacancies which comply with the requirements of the National Minimum Wage Act and its associated regulations. All Jobcentre Managers will be required to check that this guidance is being followed. Vacancy takers in Jobcentres will advise employers using the Employment Service who may seek to offer rates below the National Minimum Wage of the requirements of the legislation. The Employment Service is working closely with the Department of Trade and Industry, who have responsibility for the National Minimum Wage Act 1998, and through them with the Inland Revenue who are charged with its enforcement. Any complaints received at Jobcentres about employers who may not be meeting the requirements of the Act will be passed to the Inland Revenue to investigate. I hope this is helpful.