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British companies that take on interns considered to be disadvantaged should receive rewards from the government, a thinktank has suggested.
Demos proposed a 'pay-back' system for providing high-quality experience, with firms getting money if stable employment is found within a year of completing a placement.
The measure is aimed at helping get youngsters not in employment, education or training into work, with a reward of between £1,000 and £5,000 for each successful internship offset by savings on the amount such people cost the state.
Director of Demos Julia Margo explained placements are an important way to learn, adding: "Getting at-risk young people into internships will go a long way to giving them the opportunities and aspirations open to middle class graduates – we should think of them as a 'non-graduate talent pool'."
The proposals are aimed mainly at young offenders and those leaving care and come after co-founder of the Graduate Recruitment Bureau Dan Hawes reminded employers of their obligations to interns under the law - warning that expenses should be paid at the least.
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