Monday, 20 March 2017

SUBWAY's Sandwich Artist "Apprenticeship"

In Gateshead, Subway is offering 8 positions for an 35hr/week, £3.40/hr (for those under-19), 14 month long apprenticeship. Apprentices will "greet and serves guests, prepare food and maintain food safety and sanitation standards".

Last time I checked, shoving sterile-tasting rations of meat and "salad" into hunks of bread under the watchful gaze of a hungry punter whose current dilemma is whether the extra pickles are worth it does not really constitute a substantial educative experience, and so it is fairly dishonest to pitch doing so as an apprenticeship.

14 months is far too long for such a repetitive and simple task - from a standpoint of actually providing something useful to apprentices, it makes no sense to run the scheme for so long. What the scheme actually does provide is a Level 2 diploma in work based food production and cookery, but the conditions under which this is provided are unsavoury, to say the least.

It isn't to say that "theHospitality Sector" is illegitimate or somehow beneath people, but the relations between the employer and the apprentices in this case are profoundly unequal. Teenagers who become "Apprentice Sandwich Artists" are told they'll be treated like crap but will have to smile like they enjoy it. This is the ultimate perversion of many jobs as they are marketed to today's youth.

While this is just a single franchise (so it's still "morally permissible" for you to get a cheeky sub after school, don't worry), it calls the legitimacy of both Subway as corporation which has "business ethics" and the Apprenticeships Service, which is supposed to help young people instead of screwing them over, into disrepute.

Apply here. 

DISCLAIMER: This is a critical article and so is comprised of the personal opinions of the author.

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