In return for no money, for 21 hours a week, for five months, ‘You’ll become a member of the team and will assist with food preparation, serving customers and ensuring the shop and kitchen areas are kept clean and tidy.‘ Despite huge profits, billion pound fast food multi nationals like Subway use unpaid labour and zero hour contracts, leaving young workers especially vulnerable and exploited.
Traineeships are not apprenticeships. They are a form of workfare: forced, unpaid labour under threat of sanctions. They fall under an ‘exemption to the National Minimum Wage’ and are specifically designed to enable employers to take on young people aged 16-24 without paying them. The only obligation an employer has, having used you as free labour for five months, is to give you an interview – either a job interview or an ‘exit interview’.
As the Government guidelines say: ‘Traineeships are delivered by training providers and funded by the government, with employers providing the valuable work experience placement and interview as part of the programme.’
With £12 million currently set aside for traineeship delivery, the only people who aren’t making money out of this are the young people forced to work for nothing – this list of other companies who are also using traineeships to avoid paying people is just now advertising 580 traineeships.
Let Subway know that workfare can’t be disguised so easily.
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