'Unpaid' jobless Jubilee stewards

A security firm has allegedly forced a group of long-term unemployed jobseekers to sleep under London Bridge before working on the Diamond Jubilee river pageant. There are reports that the attendants were unpaid for their work.

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Labour MP: Jubilee stewards left by roadside at 3am in London

Shadow Foreign Minister Kerry McCarthy has tweeted that a group of long-term unemployed jobseekers were forced to bring their own tents to the capital and left to "sleep" under London Bridge.

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Just been on phone to one of the jubilee stewards. They had to bring their own tents and sleeping bags, but too cold and wet to sleep.

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Arrived in London 3am, left by roadside, eventually taken to London Bridge to 'sleep' but had to start work 5am/5.30am.

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Were told by Close Protection they'd get £450 for their work, then Tomorrow's People said it was 'work experience', unpaid.

Jobseekers forced to 'sleep under bridge' ahead of pageant

A security firm who allegedly forced a group of long-term unemployed jobseekers to sleep under London Bridge before working on the Diamond Jubilee River Pageant told The Guardian it was "unfortunate" but "not lack of care".

Up to 30 jobseekers and another 50 people on apprentice wages were taken to London by coach from Bristol, Bath and Plymouth as part of the government's Work Programme, Close Protection UK said.

The nature of festival and event work is such that we often travel sleeping on coaches through the night with an early morning pre-event start – it is the nature of the business. It's hard work and not for the faint-hearted.

We had staff travel from several locations and some arrived earlier than others at the meeting point, which I believe was London Bridge, which was why some had to hang around. This is an unfortunate set of circumstances but not lack of care on the part of CPUK.

– Molly Prince, managing director of Close Protection UK

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