APPRENTICES working in the NHS and other public services will be protected from exploitative employers under a charter launched at Unison conference yesterday.
Unison general secretary Dave Prentis hailed the document as an “important step forward” in protecting apprentices from unscrupulous bosses.
The charter calls for a range of protections to stop apprentices being used as “cheap labour” including a guaranteed employment contract, high quality training and being paid the rate for the job.
Mr Prentis said: “Young people have been hit hard by the government’s austerity policies, and youth unemployment is at a critical level. “Apprenticeships are a way of improving job opportunities for them and for older people. But many employers are under pressure to cut costs and unscrupulous ones may be looking to exploit apprentices.
“This charter is an important step forward in protecting apprentices at work so they’re not just used as cheap labour. And employers will benefit too from a loyal, skilled and dedicated workforce.”