Wednesday, 1 June 2011

BBC Media City Accused of Exploiting Salford Youngsters!

Child exploitation in the good old days!
As part of the BBC's commitment to the local economy and young people living in 'deprived communities', the Beeb, have recently been advertising for young people in Salford and Trafford, to work as meet and greet BBC 'Ambassadors' at their new HQ in Salford's Media City.

The job specification says that the job involves working on reception and welcoming and looking after guests. It also states: "Please note this role is not a production role, so you will not be working on making programmes." For those youngsters who make the grade, the BBC, says that other opportunities are on offer - "with our partners Balfour Beatty" - such as learning how buildings are managed, giving guided tours, and working in security, housekeeping, and in the post room.

As regards the type of person the BBC are looking for, they state:

"The kind of person you are and your attitude to work is much more important to us than your knowledge, experience or qualifications."

While some people might think it a wonderful opportunity to work for the Beeb, they have nevertheless, been accused of exploiting youngsters by paying low wages to local young people. The 12 full-time jobs on offer, - which will last for six months - pay £3.64 per hour for 16-17 year olds and £4.92 for 18-19 year olds. A Salford mum told the 'Salford Star' that she was disgusted that her daughter had been asked to work for such low wages when consultants and BBC staff were earning megabucks.

While Salford's youngsters are pocketing a pittance for working for the BBC, the consultant who is responsible for finding jobs for kids from 'deprived communities', Chris Marsh, is being paid by cash-strapped Salford City Council, the obscene sum of £46,800 for just 12 days work a month, or £650 per day.

Peter Salmon, the Director of BBC North, said:

"As we begin to make a home for the BBC at Media City UK, I am proud that we are making good on our promise to be as inclusive as possible when it comes to recruitment."

1 comment:

mktackabery said...

Wow. £3.64 is about US$6, which is well below standard minimum wage per hour here (US$7.25 in most states, as high as US$8 in the most populous states like California, which is around the higher rate you have for 18 & 19-year olds). It certainly doesn't seem to meet the minimum for jobs like guided tours, which seem to require quite a bit more "brain work" to perform every day.

Would you say there is an assumption that having a BBC position is so desirable that people would actually work for free? Never yet met that type of teenager. That's some stellar community networking going on there. The eyes roll.