NATIONAL MINIMUM WAGE - EMPLOYERS ARE BREAKING THE LAW IF THEY DO NOT PAY INTERNS

02 August 2010

Unpaid internships are common in politics, media and the fashion industry and enable young people to get a head start in their career.

The report points out employers mistakenly believe there is a ‘grey area’ around internships in the National Minimum Wage legislation and that they are allowed to take on unpaid interns so long as both sides know it is a voluntary position – but they are wrong. The law is in fact very clear and this is simply not the case.

Many private-sector organisations offer unpaid, expenses-only internships that almost certainly could not be described as ‘work experience’.

Some surveys have found that only half of the organisations that use interns pay them at least the adult minimum wage. But just under a fifth of them (18%) pay no wage whatsoever, and just under a third (28%) pay less than the adult minimum wage. Read more….