Socialist Worker

Work for free at queen’s jubilee

Issue No. 2306

A group of unemployed people slept on the streets last weekend before being coerced into working for free—at the queen’s jubilee.

It is the latest shocking story of life under the Tories’ Work Programme.

Up to 30 jobless people were bussed into London from Bristol, Bath and Plymouth to work as stewards.

Workers from Bristol say they were dumped in London at 3am on Sunday.

Some said they had originally been told they would be paid for the work. But when they got onto coaches they were told they’d be doing the work for free—or lose out on a chance of paid work at the Olympics.

One woman said, “We followed them under London Bridge and that’s where they told us to camp out for the night. It was raining and freezing.”

They had no toilet access for 24 hours.

Close Protection UK supplied the workers and the placements were arranged by the charity Tomorrow’s People.

Close Protection boss Molly Prince said the firm took the welfare of its staff and apprentices “very seriously”.

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Tue 5 Jun 2012, 17:15 BST
Issue No. 2306
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