Blears has been supporting the Intern Aware campaign, which rightly calls for internships – periods of work experience usually aimed at graduates beginning professional careers – to come with a salary. Blears claims it is a “modern day scandal” that these jobs come without pay.
Yet astonishingly (as revealed by @boycottworkfare on twitter) Blears doesn’t just support unpaid work for young unemployed people, but she is actively involved in arranging workfare placements. Blears runs the Kids Without Connections scheme, a ‘work experience’ programme linked to the Jobcentre and which doesn’t pay workers a penny.
Far from being a “modern day scandal” Blears claims it is “fantastic” that scores of young people have been sent to work unpaid for profit making companies like the multi-national Fujitsu.
Rarely has such naked class prejudice within the Labour Party been more exposed. It is chilling that even a woman from a working class background like Blears appears to think that those who are poor should not have the same basic human right to a wage as everybody else.
Sadly even to Labour MPs the poor are a now seen as a barely human sub-class who can be kicked around at will as a warning to everyone else. In this context it is easy to understand why the increasing number of deaths linked to welfare reforms are glibly dismissed by politicians of all parties. The suffering of the poor to these scum is nothing compared to the scandal that their own darling little Tarquins and Jemimas might have to work for a couple of months without pay before they begin their lucrative careers in politics, media, law or the arts.
And of course they should be paid, every worker deserves a wage, and Blears is right to say that companies using unpaid workers should be ‘named and shamed’. So let’s start with @fujitsu_uk, @2ergo and @KeepmoatHomes who have all exploited young unemployed people as part of @HazelBlearsMP workfare scheme.
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