Your stories

“I worked in a franchised Spar shop in Dublin. I was a part-time member of staff receiving the minimum wage. I never received a contract during the time I was working there, but the hours were consistent – mainly evenings and weekends. I had a number of problems while I was there. I never got proper breaks, often I would work 6 hours or more but would only receive a 15 minute break in that time. The biggest issue I had was with getting paid. The boss paid me in cash which meant I wasn’t guaranteed to get paid at a certain time each week, and often I would have to go and ask them to give me my wages.” – Helen
“I work in a large hotel chain cleaning rooms. I’m paid the minimum wage and I’m on an ‘if and when’ contract. From week to week I don’t know when or for how long I will be working, this means I don’t have any guaranteed level of income and can’t make any plans. My co-workers are mostly migrants and female like myself. In the last few weeks management have begun to implement a time management system by linking the hours we have worked to the number of rooms which get cleaned. This means we have to work even harder and faster to hit their targets, no matter how dirty a room is, for same level of pay.”¬†– Jenny


“I’m 23 and so far I’ve had 6 jobs ranging from retail and hospitality to office work. Only one of these jobs actually had a proper interview process. The longest contract I have had was 10 months long, every other position was based on when the company needed people in. So some weeks I might only be given 8-16 hours but could be asked to work longer depending how busy it was that day. Because I was only on temporary contracts the managers felt they could use me however they wanted to get the most work out of me in the shortest time without caring if I came back to work the next day or not.” – Mick¬†
“I worked for one of the major multinational search engine companies trying to sell some of their other products and upgrades. I got the job through a recruitment agency after filling in an online application and without a proper interview. We were put under pressure everyday to reach unachievable targets. There was a horrible little canteen in the place, and we were expected to pay for our own taxis when they required us to work late. I was forced to leave due to ill health.”- Paul
“I’ve been working in a care home for the last while. It’s only 12 hours a week, I want full time hours but the company won’t give them to us. We have to work late hours on a regular basis, and don’t get any extra pay for it. We just get our normal rate of pay. There are always rows over the staffing levels, there’s never enough staff in at any one time so its really stressful, especially at night when there’s 3 of us to look after 39 patients. We’ve asked them increase the staffing levels but they won’t.”- Angela



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