The Graun has really gone to town on Molly Prince. What a spectacular all-round fuck up this has been.Criminal past and rich tastes of boss at centre of jubilee security row
John Harris' article from Friday is also well worth reading.
On Friday, I spoke to one of the 30 unpaid people at the heart of the controversy. This young woman had been made redundant early last year. Eventually, she was referred by her jobcentre adviser to Tomorrow's People, a charity administering the work programme, and persuaded to train for a qualification in security work. As part of her training, she had already worked for nothing, but only once: at a football match, "observing the crowd and making sure there were no issues", with six other people on the same scheme. When she and others were informed about the jubilee weekend, she said, they were at first told they would be paid around £400, "but at the last minute, they said, 'You're not getting anything – it's work experience'."http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2012/ ... ur-growing
Sleeping under London bridge, she said, had been impossible: "It was too cold, it was raining, and there were way too many people." She thus started work at 9.30am, having had no sleep for upwards of 20 hours. She put on her work clothes "in public, in the cold". Breakfast – "piddly", she said – had not arrived until 9.15am. The first chance she had to use a toilet, she claimed, was at 2pm. She was supposed to stop work 12 hours after she started, "but me and some other people gave up, cos we were that cold and wet, at six o'clock." She was then told to take the tube to the end of the Central line, whereupon she called her mother and stepfather almost 150 miles away and asked them to come and get her. "I was that distraught. I had five layers on, and I was soaked through. I was having trouble breathing. After standing up for nine hours, I had a back spasm; I could barely walk. I'd just had enough."
"I'm signing on tomorrow," she said, "and I'm asking to be withdrawn from Tomorrow's People. I can't trust them. I don't want to be treated like dirt, working long hours for nothing.
"There's work experience, and there's slave labour. I wouldn't mind work experience for free if it was in good conditions and I was treated properly … not being asked to change in public and having no access to a toilet." (By way of a response, Tomorrow's People supplied the Guardian with a list of contact numbers for other work programme participants who had been taken to London on an unpaid basis; they proved to be either unavailable, or unwilling to talk).