Posted by: Clare Solomon | May 31, 2011

Imagine a day without interns on Wednesday 8 June, 12-2pm

Calling all interns! Unpaid or underpaid internships are illegal: U.K. government has provided guidance that interns “should be paid if they have a list of duties and work set hours,” as per the National Minimum Wage of 1998.

See Facebook group HERE

Come show politicians your support for the INTERN BILL OF RIGHTS! The NUS, ULU, Unite, Intern Aware, Interns Anonymous and Ross Perlin, author of Intern Nation, want politicians to come face-to-face with the exploitation faced by young people working for free across the country – show how much you contribute to the UK economy outside the House of Commons.

GIVEN that the word “intern” has no strict definition and covers a broad range of actual roles,
GIVEN that most interns are workers, performing work of operational and economic importance,

GIVEN that the laws and regulations pertaining to internships are often unclear, vary by jurisdiction, and rarely reference interns specifically,

GIVEN that internships are of increasing, global importance and have broad social implications,

GIVEN that some internships are legal, just, and beneficial, while others are illegal, unethical, and even exploitative,

GIVEN that it is inequitable to require people to work for free to enter the workforce,

We proclaim this INTERN BILL OF RIGHTS as a common standard by which to evaluate and improve internships for the benefit of interns, employers, and society as a whole:

Article 1: All interns deserve fair compensation for their work, usually in the form of wages and sometimes in the form of dedicated training.

Article 2: Interns are entitled to the same legal protections as all other workers, and should not be subject to discrimination, harassment, or arbitrary dismissal. Under these circumstances, interns should have the same standing in court and the same recourse to the law as all other workers.

Article 3: Interns should enjoy the same basic workplace benefits guaran- teed to all other workers, including sick days, vacation time, worker’s compensation, and extra pay for overtime.

Article 4: The hiring of interns should be as transparent and nondiscrimi- natory as the hiring of full-time employees.

Article 5: No one should be forced to take an unpaid internship or required to pay in order to work.

Article 6: Any internships subsidized with public funds should meet exemplary legal and ethical standards.

Article 7: Internships are a category of work that should be defined, rec- ognized by policy makers and officials, studied, monitored, and improved.

Article 8: Interns must be treated with dignity and respect by coworkers and supervisors.

Article 9: The word “intern” should be applied ethically and transparently to opportunities that involve substantial training, mentoring, and getting to know a line of work.

Please let us know of your interest by emailing with your name, postcode and stating if you are currently doing a internship.



  1. […] on ULU campaigner blog including the full text of Ross Perlin’s INTERN BILL OF […]

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