Ironically, the only people on the internet now defending forcing people to sleep under a bridge are trolls. June 5, 2012 4:40 AMSubscribe
In the midst of the Jubilee celebrations, the Guardian reported that coachloads of long-term unemployed jobseekers were bussed in to steward the Queen's river pageant without pay as part of the UK government's controversial new Work Programme.
Jobseekers were made to sleep under London Bridge and given “no access to toilets for 24 hours, and were taken to a swampy campsite outside London after working a 14-hour shift”. Under the promise of paid work, jobseekers turned up at a coach Saturday night where they were told the would not in fact be paid "and that if they did not accept it they would not be considered for well-paid work at the Olympics". Elsewhere, paid staff were told the would no longer be needed. Turning down work could also affect jobseekers' benefits.