IDS criticises those who are 'too good to stack shelves'

The work and pensions secretary has criticised people "who think they're too good" to stack supermarket shelves. Iain Duncan Smith said many "smart people" overlooked the importance of effective shelf-stacking.

Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith Credit: Jeff Overs/BBC/PA Wire

Geology graduate Cait Reilly recently won a legal victory over the government's back-to-work scheme. But the Mr Duncan Smith warned against assuming that geology was more important than supermarket work

He said: "I understand she said she wasn't paid. She was paid jobseeker's allowance, by the taxpayer, to do this. I'm sorry, but there is a group of people out there who think they're too good for this kind of stuff."

"Let me remind you that [former Tesco chief executive] Terry Leahy started his life stacking shelves."

The next time somebody goes in - those smart people who say there's something wrong with this - they go into their supermarket, ask themselves this simple question.

"When they can't find the food they want on the shelves, who is more important - them, the geologist, or the person who stacked the shelves?"

He was speaking on BBC1's Andrew Marr Show.

Advertisement

IDS: Shelf-stacking 'important'

A University graduate has won a legal ruling today that a Government back-to-work scheme, requiring her to work for free at a Poundland discount store, was unlawful.