“Anyone considered a worker under the law should be paid at least the minimum wage, whether they are an intern, or someone on work experience.”
Employment Relations Minister Jo Swinson MP
The Government job-seeking website Universal Jobmatch is still littered with illegal unpaid work despite David Cameron’s claims that companies who fail to pay the minimum wage will be ‘named and shamed’.
Many employers are using the site to offer unpaid work experience roles or internships such as this advertisement calling for”extremely hardworking” graduates to work in exchange for lunch and travel expenses.
Unless unpaid work experience positions form part of a formal Jobcentre scheme they are illegal under minimum wage laws. The law is very clear and guidance on who is entitled to receive the minimum wage can be found on the same gov.uk website which hosts Universal Jobmatch.
These exploitative employers are far from the only criminals making use of this website to fleece unemployed people. According to opportunistic wanker Frank ‘Atos’ Field, several of his constituents have been scammed after using the website by fake employers asking for bank details or money upfront for criminal record checks.
Field claims that half the jobs advertised on Universal Jobmatch may breach the terms and conditions of the site, a fact backed up by the recent Channel 4 investigation which found that over 11,000 bogus jobs on the website were invented by just one man. Shady businessman Mark Coward received money from recruitment agency CV Library every time a jobseeker sent in their CV to apply for one of the fake jobs. Last night Channel 4 News also revealed that over 20% of the jobs advertised on the site are duplicates.
It is genuinely astonishing that the DWP is aiding and abetting outright fraudsters by giving them an online platform to recruit victims. Meanwhile one Government department is claiming they are cracking down on employers who don’t pay the minimum wage whilst the DWP are happily advertising these kinds of jobs on their own website.
Iain Duncan Smith can’t even run a fucking website without it being over-whelmed by scammers, fake jobs or illegal job vacancies. Yet he is still being handed billions to build a new IT system which he claims will revolutionise the benefits system when Universal Credit is finally launched. The DWP already claim that Universal Jobmatch “revolutionises the way jobseekers look for work”. If this is a sign of things to come then Universal Credit could be the most expensive and embarrassing Government IT farce that the UK has ever seen – and we’ve seen quite a few.
Whilst registration on the Unversal Jobmatch website can be mandated by Jobcentres, there is currently no requirement to tick the box allowing the DWP to snoop on your jobsearch (you can also untick the box which asks if they can send you emails). You should be under no obligation to use the website anywhere but Jobcentres and there is really no need to tell the DWP if you have a home computer. For the most up to date information on Universal Jobmatch and your rights visit: http://refuted.org.uk/jobmatch/
Fancy a break from work related activity – there’s an app for that. Let Universal Automation take the strain whilst you put your feet up.
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