Court rejects worker’s minimum wage claim
A South Wales homecare worker has failed in a bid to persuade a court that she was paid below the minimum wage. Julie Walton from Ystradgynlais, working for the Independent Living Organisation, claimed before the High Court that in effect she was being paid Â£1.31 an hour for looking after an elderly epilepsy sufferer at home. Mrs Walton said she was on call constantly three days a week and therefore “worked” 72 hours. She said that she slept on the premises and did numerous tasks including her client1s washing, ironing, shopping and cooking. However, the Independent Living Organisation said Mrs Walton was only contracted to carry out specific tasks and that these took about six hours and 50 minutes-a-day, bringing her hourly rate up to Â£4.60. Ruling in favour of the Independent Living Organisation, Lord Justice Aldous said that, under the terms of her contract Mrs Walton “was not paid by reference to the time for which she worked but by reference to the tasks required of her”.