International Intern’s Day : Youth Empowerment through Fair Internships
On November 3rd, the Fair Internship Initiative organized with the support of the ILO Intern Board, the discussion “Youth Empowerment through Fair Internships”.
The event took place as a celebration of the International Interns’ Day, a global day to raise awareness about the importance of improving the accessibility and labour conditions of internships. Lead by the European Youth Forum and InternsGoPro, and supported by the European Commission, the day is celebrated since 2015 on 10 November and articulated in a number of public events in Brussels, Madrid, Paris, Budapest, Geneva and other cities.
The event started with the opening remarks of the Director General of the ILO, Mr. Guy Ryder, who highlighted employers’ responsibilities towards interns, including satisfactory working conditions, compensation, fair access to promote equity and social mobility and the managerial duty to provide meaningful tasks and development content.
Three keynote presentations provided the current internship panorama. Mr. Niall O’Higgins (ILO) provided highlights on the effect of compensation on internship programmes and the conditions in which internships provide an effective bridge to stable employment. Following with statistical data, Mr. Laura Cicciarelli presented key data results of the Global Interns Survey ’17. Both presentations coincided in affirming that paid internships present higher chances of employment after the internship. On the legal ground, Mr. Gian Luca Burci tackled specific issues of the legal situation of interns such as their non-staff consideration, their lack of access to justice systems and the lack of regulation of internship conditions.
The event continued with a vivid panel discussion where the ILO, IOM, WIPO, UNICEF and UPR Info were represented. Several policies were exchanged regarding the promotion of fair conditions and posterior employment, such as the use of external contracting, limitation of internship offers, remuneration offered and internship supervision practices.