Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse…we get this in the mail. Our correspondent included two tweets as screen shots, we are posting them because they asked us to.
I have recently been unfairly dismissed from the owner of a design house because I told them they were being unrealistic with the volume of garments demanded to be produced per day…
I started a ‘trial month’ that soon turned into a two month trial the day I started and later found that other graduates on trial had been there for three months or more.
I relocated because it was a requirement. I was told I had to work full time and was given no funding whatsoever. I was expected to pay for rent, bills, food and travel myself.
After the first few days it soon became apparent that there was only one full time paid member of staff. The rest were interns. I also met the owner of the company (for the first time) after 5 full days of work.
I was expected to work a minimum of 10 hours a day. We were never told what time to we would be allowed to leave in the evening until the last minute.
I was put on the production line immediately. With no training whatsoever I was making garments to be sold for profit.
Feeling concerned about the businesses set up (majority unpaid interns, looked like there were no job prospects despite being invited for a ‘trial period’) I broke down, told the design assistant that I had concerns. She asked the owner to speak to me. She saw that I had been crying… laughed at me and asked what was wrong. She then went on to say that she didn’t have time to see how everyone was feeling, she was always too busy. “I’m a cold heartless bitch, that’s just the way I am” As if I was just supposed to accept that and move on….
I decided to stick it out and hope things would get better…
Last week, at the end of my third week working for the company I was asked to fill out a timetable that had been put on the wall for each intern. I explained that once I had made a certain style of dress I would know how many I could make in a day. Her response was “It’s not about how many you want to make in a day, it’s how many you HAVE to make. If you have 50 dresses to make in a day you have to make 50” I then explained that she was being unrealistic in her expectations and that it only made sense for me to put down as many as I could feasibly make in a day. She then went on to say “don’t argue with me I’ve been working in this industry for years” I started to walk away after saying that I couldn’t talk to her about this as she was being unreasonable. She then shouted at me “get your stuff together and leave, go home”
I was given no appreciation for the work I had completed. She didn’t care who I was, I was just a number. Free labour.
To add insult to injury she later put this on twitter…
Seeing this was heart wrenching. I felt embarrassed and stupid. Having such a bad experience in an industry that I had previously felt so passionately about has almost put me off entirely. The worse thing is that evidently this happened before hence ‘another intern has been asked to leave’ yet most are too ashamed to tell anyone. I’m furious. Having met so many talented interns at this placement I am concerned that their hopes and dreams will be shattered too.