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Tesco offers to pay young people on government backed work experience scheme

Tesco has announced that it will pay any young person accepted for work experience at the supermarket amid a growing row over a government work experience scheme.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Tesco offers to pay young people on government backed work experience scheme

Tesco has announced that it will pay any young person accepted for work experience at the supermarket amid a growing row over a government work experience scheme.

The supermarket faced a backlash after it placed a job advert looking for permanent night-shift workers at its branch in Bury St Edmonds in exchange for jobseeker's allowance "plus expenses".

In a notice posted on its website yesterday, Tesco said:

"Tesco has today announced that from now on any young person accepted for work experience with Tesco will be offered a choice:

- To participate in the Government scheme, which protects their benefits for the duration of the four-week placement. Tesco has suggested to the Department of Work and Pensions that, to avoid any misunderstanding about the voluntary nature of the scheme, the risk of losing benefits that currently exists should be removed.

- Alternatively, to be paid by Tesco for the four-week placement, with a guaranteed permanent job at the end of it, provided they complete the placement satisfactorily."

Richard Brasher, CEO of Tesco UK, said: "We know it is difficult for young people to give up benefits for a short-term placement with no permanent job at the end of it. So this guarantee that a job will be available provided the placement is completed satisfactorily, should be a major confidence boost for young people wanting to enter work on a permanent basis."

Tesco said it had committed 3000 work placements under the government’s work experience scheme with 1500 being delivered to date. The supermarket said it would offer the choice of paid work and the jobs guarantee to all of the remaining placements delivered under the scheme. 

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