Labour Students Get #PayUpChuka Hashtag Trending

After Chuka Umunna was slapped down by Jeremy Corbyn for seeking an unpaid intern, and then doubled down and insisted he was right to offer the year-long placement, young Labour members have started a #PayUpChuka hashtag. Which was soon trending on Twitter last night…

Other MPs have been in touch with Guido to say Chuka is wrong that IPSA don’t allow paid interns. “He is not telling the truth. I have a paid intern at the moment,” one texts. Guido also hears whispers that other Labour MPs have been using the same unpaid students scheme as Chuka, contrary to Labour’s manifesto and orders from the Leader’s Office to pay interns. If you are or have been an unpaid Labour intern, get in touch in confidence… 

Corbyn Slaps Down Chuka Over Unpaid Interns

This morning Guido reported Chuka Umunna was seeking an unpaid intern to work in his office for a year. This afternoon Corbyn’s office has emailed all Labour MPs warning them that it is against Labour Party policy to employ unpaid interns:

Afternoon Briefing: Thursday 31 May

Colleagues,

Please see below a message from the Leaders Office:

This is a reminder to all MPs that it is against Labour Party policy to employ unpaid interns. As part of our 20-point plan for security and equality at work, set out in the 2017 General Election Manifesto, we have pledged to ban unpaid internships.

Chuka has doubled down and insisted he is right to offer the unpaid placement as it is part of a supported university scheme:

“Unfortunately, IPSA do not provide additional resources for MPs to recruit interns on a paid basis, though the Parliamentary Labour Party has always argued strongly for them to do so. I strongly believe that interns should be paid and, for that reason, I do not have any unsupported interns working in the office despite the many requests received. For many years, my office has only accepted students undertaking work experience as part of supported university schemes, or short work experience placements from the schools in my constituency.”

Clearly Jezza doesn’t agree…

Chuka Seeking Unpaid Intern For a Year

This email has been sent round students at the University of Leeds (h/t Kane Emerson), seeking “an enthusiastic placement student to join his London-based office” for a year. The job requires real work including research, preparing letters and briefings, casework and select committee work. While students’ years in industry are usually paid, the email says “Please note, this placement is unpaid”. Chuka is a former employment lawyer and it seems he is using the loophole that his year-long intern is not “under obligation” to work to get around minimum wage law. Come on Chuka, pay your interns…

Some Interns More Equal Than Others

Intern

What’s the one thing you shouldn’t do if you are the Shadow Equalities minister? Advertising for an unpaid intern is probably pretty high up the list. That is exactly what Kate Osamor has done.

The naughty Corbynista only offered to pay expenses for her new “constituency intern” in an advert placed on W4MP yesterday. All a “misunderstanding”, she said when caught, promising to edit the advert and offer the living wage. The full title of Osamor’s role is Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities. Wage equality clearly isn’t in her brief…

H/T @ianjsilvera

Labour’s Unpaid Internship Promise Not All It Seemas

“We’ll end the scandal of unpaid internships,” Labour vowed before the election, so it is lucky for their tight-fisted MPs that they didn’t win. Last month Guido revealed Angela Eagle’s unpaid internship hypocrisy. Now Seema Malhotra is looking for a “volunteer” to “work in her busy Westminster and Constituency offices for four days a week“. The successful candidate will be expected to do “Day to day office administration, Database management, Assisting with diary management and events” and “work enthusiastically as part of a small team“. And what is she paying? “Reasonable lunch and travel expenses“. Guido will let readers make up their own minds about whether that sounds like a real job…

This is, of course, the same Seema Malhotra who employed her staff on zero hours contracts at the height of Labour’s campaign against the “epidemic“. Do as we say, not as we do…

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