• FRANÇAIS -- NEDERLANDS -- DEUTSCH

     

    WHAT ARE WE DOING?

    Launched by the Brussels Interns NGO, the “Just Pay!” campaign monitors the Belgian job market to check that internship-providers comply with Belgian law. The latter offers two possibilities:

    1. The Professional Immersion Convention (Convention d’immersion professionnelle, CIP), which is a specific contract for work-based learning and clearly demands that internships have a meaningful training component, clear supervision of tasks and minimum remuneration.
    2. A normal work contract paying at least minimum wage.

    Belgian law does not allow for un(der)paid internships outside official education. Internships which do not appear to follow Belgian law will be listed on this page while we contact the internship-provider to clarify the situation. If internship-providers are unresponsive or show no intention of changing their behaviour, we will increase pressure through media, and ultimately support individuals who wish to take the issue to the Belgian authorities. Click on our charming flowchart for more details about the process.

     

    WHY ARE WE DOING IT?

    Because unpaid is illegal. Because unpaid internships widen inequality, undermine the tax system, and leave professionals without social security or protection at work. Because they promote a culture where employers do not support or train their staff, seeing no reason to invest in them. Ultimately, we want to end unpaid internships in Belgium in the coming 2 years.

  • OUR CASES

    These are some of the internship programs that are worrying us (more will be added as information comes in). It seems that they do not comply with Belgian legislation. We are in touch with the internship-providers to clarify the situation, and will update their status whenever we have more information.

     

    See our monitoring flowchart for a better understanding of how we interact with internship-providers. Take a look as well at the latest stats.

    Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE)

    Phase 2 - closed after ad was taken down

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Clarification received

    - unclear, but the ad was taken down, and the recruitment in the mentioned terms seems to have stopped.

    Application Developers Alliance

    Phase 3 - no reply received after initial approach, registered letter returned to us

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is paid, but unclear regarding amount or contractual conditions.

    Association of Cities and Regions for Recycling and sustainable Resource management

    Phase 2 - closed after call with representative

    Our concern

    - advertisement online and description mentioning the internship is underpaid, and implying it is for graduates.

    Clarification received

    - clarification that it is a volunteership opportunity, and commitment received to clarify future ads.

    Association européenne pour la défense des Droits de l'Homme (AEDH)

    Phase 1 - initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on whom they take as interns.

    Clarification received

    - internships are generally offered to individuals who are enrolled in a study programme, but volunteering opportunities are provided ad-hoc. Clarification of both options will be reflected in future advertisements.

    Bonne Foi

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - internship is only for students.

    Brussels Mindfulness Institute

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online confirming the internship as unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - advertisement taken offline.

    Burson-Marsteller

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Clarification received

    - interns are offered a CIP agreement.

    CEFIC

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on conditions offered.

    cerre

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Clarification received

    - interns are offered CIP

    Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies (CER)

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on the intern's profile (student or not student).

    Clarification received

    - interns are offered CIP, or different agreement if still a student.

    - unfortunately, no commitment was received regarding clarification of future advertisements.

    Coopération Internationale pour le Développement et la Solidarité (CIDSE)

    Phase 1 - initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online (here and here) unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    CultureTrip

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarifications received

    - confirmation received that no more unpaid internships will be offered in Belgium.

    Deutsche Welle

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online indicating under-remuneration of the intern.

    DR2Consultants

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online stating under-remuneration of the intern, and without information regarding the legal framework within which the intern would work.

    Clarification received

    - programme will be changed towards CIP terms.

     

    Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Eurocities

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning underpayment of the intern.

    Clarification received

    - it is not an internship, but a volunteership opportunity. Eurocities ensured this will be clear in future advertisements.

    European Affairs Consulting Group (EACON Group)

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Clarification received

    - different sort of frameworks applicable to fit the status of the young professional.

    Eurogroup for Animals

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - the above screenshot refers to a particular programme offered to scientific-oriented students, and the advertisement will be changed to reflect this. The organization also uses the CIP framework for regular internship programmes, as can be consulted on their website.

    European Association for the Promotion of Cogeneration (COGEN Europe)

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement indicates under remuneration of the intern (if not under volunteer agreement).

    European Association for Viewers' Interests (EAVI)

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter, but closed after new advertisement emerged

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning underpayment of the intern.

    Clarification

    - new ad online clarifies that internships are only for students.

    European Association of Service Providers for Persons with Disabilities (EASPD)

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    - second advertisement appeared in February 2017, still with no paid options for the intern.

    Phase 2 - closed after further research

    Our concern

    - advertisement online stating the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification found

    - internship is not in Belgium.

    European Dairy Association (EDA)

    Phase 3 - replied but did not provide information requested

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    European Healthcare Distribution Association (GIRP)

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter, but closed after new advertisement emerged

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on conditions offered.

    Clarification received

    - new advert

    European Historic Houses

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning underpayment of the intern.

    European Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (EHA)

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    European Institute for Asian Studies (EIAS)

    Phase 2 - closed after ad was taken down

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - confirmed that the internship programme is only for students and volunteers.

    European Microfinance Network

    Phase 2 - clarifications received after second approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unclear.

    Clarifications received

    - It is a volunteership - commitment received to indicate that in the advertisement for future vacancies.

    European Partnership for Democracy (EPD)

    Phase 2 - clarifications received after second approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on conditions offered (student contract or not?).

    Clarification received

    - it is not an internship, but a volunteership opportunity. EPD ensured this will be clear in future advertisements.

    European Plastic Pipes and Fittings Association (TEPPFA)

    Phase 3 - no reply to e-mails, registered letter sent

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    European Roma Information Center (ERIO)

    Phase 2 - clarifications received after second approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - it is a student-internship programme. We await implementation of corrections before closing this case.

    - internship advertisement corrected on 10/03/2016.

    European Society of Intensive Care Medicine (ESICM)

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Europe's People's Forum

    Phase 2 - closed after initial contact

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on contractual status.

    Clarification received

    - commitment received to correct future ads.

    FYTE

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Gibbels Public Affairs (GPA)

    Phase 3 - clarified after registered letter & exchange via social media

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on conditions offered (does GPA take interns who don't have a grant?).

    Clarification received

    - different options offered to potential interns, from EU funds to volunteering agreements.

    Hanover Communications

    Phase 2 - closed after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Clarification received

    - confirmed that the conditions are CIP ones, + several other positive elements provided to the interns

    Hertoghe Clinic

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Instinctif Partners

    Phase 2 - closed after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - internship programme is only directed to students.

    International Crisis Group

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification

    - new advertisements on the ICG website indicate that structure of the programme was changed, to be called volunteering. Volunteers should be offered volunteering agreements, in accordance to Belgian legislation.

    Kreab

    Phase 2 - closed after second approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on conditions offered.

    Clarification received

    - programme agreement is within the CIP framework.

    ListMinut

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - it is a student-internship programme.

    Orientaeuro

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - internship programme is only directed to students.

    Politico

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter, but closed after new advertisement emerged

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification

    - new ad online clarifies that internships are only for students.

    Revolve Media

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification

    - internship will be under CIP from January 2017. Many other support mechanisms are available to the intern.

    RPP Group

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Clarification

    - relevant framework applied depending on candidate 

    Service Volontaire International

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisements online (here and here) mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - internship programme is only directed to students.

    SEA Europe

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Skydoo

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Squaris

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    TD Concept Châssis

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Clarification received

    - it is a student-internship programme.

    Transtec

    Phase 2 - closed after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

    Clarification received

    - term "intern" was a mistake on the ad; ad taken down in the meanwhile (contact us for a screenshot).

    Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization

    Phase 2 - closed after second approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on conditions offered (volunteer or internship?).

    Clarification received

    - it is a student-internship programme or volunteership programme, depending on the status of applicants.

    VITA Società Editoriale

    Phase 3 - no official address found for registered letter, directly to phase 3

    Our concern

    - advertisement online referring to a remuneration below the legally required.

    Womenpreneur

    Phase 3 - replied & corrected the advertisement

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning unpaid internship.

    Clarification received

    - position is a volunteership opportunity. The advertisement has been corrected accordingly.

    World Vision

    Phase 2 - no reply received after initial approach

    Our concern

    - advertisement online mentioning the internship is unpaid.

    Clarification received

    - there are different categories for different types of internship contract, adapted to tasks demanded from the intern.

    World Savings and Retail Banking Institute (WSBI)

    Phase 3 - no reply received after registered letter

    Our concern

    - advertisement online unclear on remuneration level and contractual status.

  • WHO WE ARE

    Campaign organizer

    The Brussels Interns NGO is a Brussels-based NGO created in 2013 (registration number 540.906.444), out of the initiative of young professionals working in different sectors in the Belgian capital. Our only goal is to promote #QualityInternships.

    Donor

    Apply for Fairness is an online campaign with the aim to raise awareness among employers about the social inequality they generate when offering unpaid internships. Apply for Fairness targets unpaid internship offers and encourages people to send a “fake application letter”, pointing out that through unpaid internships employers are not getting the most skilled or qualified person for the position (lost candidate), but the one who can afford it.

    Working partner & donor

    Jeunes FGTB is a trade union for students, apprentices and young workers in French-speaking Belgium. Together with our members, we struggle to improve access to education and the working conditions of young people in Belgium and elsewhere. In order to achieve these objectives, we particularly focus on providing thorough information related to students’ and workers’ rights, and on mobilizing young people to defend and increase their rights.

    Donor

    Vision: a global community of Young Professionals creating a better world for current and future generations through local and global action.

    Mission: informing, inspiring and equipping young professionals as sustainability practitioners and social change agents.

  • WHO'S TALKING ABOUT IT?

    Marianne Thyssen

    Belgian Politician, and European Commissioner for Employment

    Traineeships are important stepping stones to work but they need to be valuable and take place under good working conditions. A traineeships should be an investment, not a substitute for free or cheap labour.

    Ulrike Lunacek

    Vice-President of the European Parliament

    The legal framework and the quality assurance of internships is problematic in many countries. Real traineeships and entry level jobs with long long-term perspectives are needed.

    Terry Reintke

    Member of the European Parliament

    We need to end the exploitation of interns as cheap labour! By hesitating to enforce effective measures the EU tolerates the precarious conditions of millions of young people in Europe. We call for quality internships that are paid, based on a signed agreement with fair working conditions and established learning contents. If we do not act now, the social marginalization of young people in Europe will proceed.

    Jutta Steinruck

    Member of the European Parliament

    Interns and Trainees are often used as cheap labour while doing the job of a regular employee. We need to make sure that young people can get quality jobs like everyone else. (...) Particularly, an adequate salary and social protection schemes are crucial since interns are often unpaid which puts them at risk of poverty and social exclusion.

  • HERE'S HOW YOU CAN HELP

    Engage

     

    Share using the below!

     

    @BrusselsInterns

    /BrusselsInterns

    #justpayurintern

    #qualityinternships

     

    Tell us your story

    Are you an unpaid intern in Belgium?

    Let us know, let us help. We are discreet and will never reveal your identity without your permission.

     

    Donate or sponsor

    We don't do this for money, but there are some costs associated!

    IBAN BE66 5230 8069 1143

    Bank: Triodos

    BIC: TRIOBEBB

     

    Paypal

     

    or contact us to talk about sponsoring the "Just Pay!" campaign.