Mike Kelly, head of Living Wage at KPMG, comments on the news that 31% of university graduates working as interns are doing so for no pay, with a six month unpaid internship costing a single person living in London a minimum of £926 a month.
He said: “Every intern should be paid fairly. It seems as though unpaid internships have increasingly become the gateway to land the first job, but the reality is that a vast majority of individuals cannot afford not to be paid. Paid internships allow everyone to compete on a level playing field for valuable experience. It is best for the individuals and best for the employer.
“Every employee, including interns, should be paid and a Living Wage should be the ultimate aim for all internships.
“Over 1000 employers have already voluntarily endorsed the Living Wage Accreditation Scheme. This has helped more than 50,000 families escape the trap of working poor. If more employers followed their leadership we could see an end to poverty pay.
“The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission drew everyone's attention to the fact that more than two thirds of children living in poverty were the children of working parents. It is time this was consigned to the history books.”
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Nahidur Rahman, KPMG Press Office
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KPMG Press Office: 020 7694 8773
KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 22 offices across the UK with approximately 11,500 partners and staff. The UK firm recorded a turnover of £1.8 billion in the year ended September 2013. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. It operates in 155 countries and has 155,000 professionals working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.
This article represents the views of the author only, and does not necessarily represent the views or professional advice of KPMG in the UK.