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Work for Spurs, for free, for a year
Wednesday, 23 May 2012
Spurs manager Harry Redmnapp overseas work a the new training ground in Bulls Cross, Enfield
TOTTENHAM Hotspur Football Club has come under fire after advertising for a year-long unpaid intern in the club’s PR department.
The advertfor the expenses-only position, which appeared on the University of Sussex jobs board, but has since been taken down, said the “ideal candidate” will live locally to the club’s new training ground in Bulls Cross, Enfield, and will work in the “thriving” press office, without a wage, for the entire 2012/13 football season.
But the club, which finished fourth in the Premier League last season, has been branded a “disgrace” by Spurs fan and veteran NUJ campaigner and TUC treasurer Mick Gosling, who has worked extensively in top-flight corporate communications.
He said: “There is no way it can be justified – not even paying minimum wage – whereas the top stars are getting salaries of tens of thousands of pounds a week. How can that be justified?
“These young people have struggled hard to make a career for themselves. They go to college and are then faced with this Hobson’s choice of working for nothing and getting nothing. This is an absolute disgrace.”
Enfield North MP Nick de Bois, who organised a jobs fair in the borough in February, said internships were a common way of getting experience but expressed surprise at the length of the placement.
He said: “I am surprised at the length of this particular one on offer as three months is a more usual time period.”
Companies have been slammed by unions before for using desperate jobseekers in this way, but according to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills the practice does not breach employment regulations as workers must be under contract and paid the national minimum wage to qualify for protection under the law.
But Spurs, who have thousands of loyal supporters across north London, are adamant the internship is an iedal opportunity for ambitious young people who want to work in sports PR.
A spokesman from the club said: “The THFC communications department offers a unique opportunity for a young person, college leaver or graduate to spend a season experiencing the working environment of our media operations, learning valuable skills that will provide a platform for future employment opportunities either within the club or elsewhere in the industry.
“For the successful applicant, a package is offered in order to cover, living, travel and accommodation expenses over the duration of the placement.
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Sir Ray Tindle
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