Once upon a time if a company wanted to hire workers and pay them a pittance they would have to go to places like India or China but now thanks to the Government, they don't need to go to Asia to pay someone £3 a day for a full days work, they can do it here.
The Ministry of Justice is planning to run call centres from inside prisons as part of its work programme for prisoners rehabilitation.
Good idea you may think, give the prisoners a skill which may help them when they are released and i would agree if the leaflet sent out to prospective clients didn't boast of offering 'lower costs and overheads' to businesses if they signed up.
'The opportunity for your organisation is a higher corporate responsibility profile by engaging in a high-profile initiative supported by the Ministry of Justice, lower costs and overheads for trained contract centre agents, flexible resources that can deal with overflow calls and specific projects, all dedicated to growing and supporting your business' the leaflet read.
'A fantastic rehabilitation revolution which offers operators with British Regional accents as an effective alternative to off shoring operations'.
Prisoners from open prisons in Wales have already been working in private call centres outside of the prison walls and have been paid £3 a day, the current rate for a prisoner on work experience. The minimum wage is £6.08 an hour for anyone over 21 so a prisoner would need to work for 2 days to equal what a minimum wage worker would earn in an hour.
David Cameron is behind it, urging business to take advantage of the opportunity to 'invest in the future of their companies and the country as a whole. I urge others to follow their lead and seize the opportunity that working prisons offer.'
The most obvious point is paying someone £3 a day for a job that they should rightly earn at least £6 an hour for is slave labour. We campaign against companies that pay such wages in other countries.
The second point is this will replace jobs which would otherwise have gone to the public who are facing testing times and unemployment spirals upwards.
Thirdly, and most importantly, we are expected to give all our personal details to someone at a call centre who is a convicted criminal? Nice one.