Ban Unpaid Internships to Help the Non-Posh Get Jobs, Say MPs

By Gary Cutlack on at

Getting a teenager in to do loads of rubbish jobs for free under the pretence of "gaining experience" should be banned to aid social mobility, says a group of MPs having a big old think about ways the UK's workplace might be made a little fairer.

The All Party Parliamentary Group on social mobility came to the conclusion that banning unpaid internships might help alter the balance of the jobs market, seeing as working for free for a few months is a luxury that only people with good support networks or well-stacked trust funds can pull off. Opening access to "top jobs for those from less advantaged homes" could be the result of any restriction on interning, according to the group's Justin Madders.

The MPs say there should still be a one-month window when working for free is acceptable, but after that all intern roles should come with some sort of salary. Alan Milburn from the Social Mobility Commission agrees, saying: "Research has consistently shown that people from more affluent backgrounds, who attend private schools and elite universities, take a disproportionate number of the best jobs while those from poorer backgrounds are being systematically locked out." [BBC]

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