UK Court bans slave labour for unemployed

We don’t get too involved in unemployment on Tamebay, our attitude is pretty much that if you don’t have a job then there’s money to be made being self employed. However there’s an interesting case where the courts agreed the regulations behind most of the governments back-to-work schemes were unlawful.

Ball and ChainBasically the case was bought by a lady who was forced to work for free in Poundland if she didn’t want to lose her benefits. She has no problem working in Poundland and in fact is currently working in another supermarket. The problem is that she was forced to work for free.

I’m not sure of the law, but I was under the impression that there was a minimum wage in the UK of £6.19 per hour. That’s probably works out more than Job Seekers allowance, but regardless if you’re working why shouldn’t the company benefiting be paying? That’s especially true if you’re to be forced to work unrelated to your normal profession and unlikely to help you return to full time paid employment (and to be frank I don’t think anyone needs much training to stack shelves and mop floors, no reason not to be paid for this type of work from day one).

I have no sympathy for the work shy who simply won’t work. I can’t help feeling though if someone is working, especially for a company out to make profits, that they shouldn’t be receiving unemployment benefit – there benefits should be suspended and the company should be paying the worker a proper wage for the period of the work experience.

What do you think? Should the unemployed be forced to work for free, or if they were getting work experience in your business would you be willing to pay them a wage?