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16Feb/120

Look good, pay less (if you’re using free government-forced labour)

Needless to say, the government scheme that encourages to go and work for tax-dodging multinationals for free is an utter disgrace, but that's probably being debated all around the web at the moment, so I thought I'd come up with something more pithy and easy to digest.

Namely, I've adapted the company mottos of the outfits currently using free labour to boost their fat profits, which are no doubt squireled away in offshore accounts helping people get back into work to reflect their forward-thinking work practices.

Asda, Primark, Argos, Boots, TK Maxx, McDonald's, Tesco and Top Shop are in the firing line (Sainsbury's has dropped out already), so I've put forward my own suggestions, which I hope the companies in questions will be adopting as a matter of course as soon as possible.

Feel free to add your own suggestions.

Tesco - Every little helps (particularly in relation to free labour)

Asda - That's Asda price (subsidised by free labour)

Primark - Look good, pay less

Argos - Find it, Get it, Argos It (Here's your £15 expenses for working a 35-hour week)

TK Maxx - Always up to 60% less (pay than minimum-wage employees)

McDonalds - I'm lovin' it (this free labour, that is)

Poundland - Yes! Everything's a pound! (including what we pay the urchins working for free in expenses")

Boots - I'm not sure if Boots has a motto, so for argument's sake we'll say it's this:

Here Come The Girls (from the job centre, working for free)

Ditto for Top Shop, so here's a suggestion:

We use free labour to boost Aracadia Group's enormous profits

Background, from The Grauniad:

Unions have called on Britain's biggest high street chains to withdraw from government programmes that make the unemployed work for up to six months unpaid or face losing their benefits.

The call comes as Sainsbury's, one of the UK's largest retailers, confirmed to the Guardian that it has stopped branch managers from taking on jobseekers under the work experience scheme.

The move follows that of Waterstones book chain, which last week announced it had pulled out of the scheme because it did not want to "encourage work for no pay".

Under the work experience scheme, hundreds of thousands of largely young jobseekers will work in charities and private businesses for 30 hours a week, for eight weeks, without pay, and can have their benefits removed if they withdraw.

The schemes are in operation at more than a dozen well-known chains, such as Boots, Tesco, Asda, Primark, Argos, TK Maxx, Poundland and the Arcadia group of stores run by billionaire Sir Philip Green, which includes Top Shop and Burton.

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