Governments 'work experience' placements for job seekers: For or against?

Well, it's been all over the news during the course of the weekend and created quite the stir. Yes, we are talking about the Governments 'work experience' programme.

In previous weeks retailers such as Sainsbury's, Waterstone's and TK Maxx have pulled out of the scheme with Poundland reviewing its policy after a human rights case. In which high court papers named the retailer alleging that a Birmingham store had breached a job seeker's human rights.

Not only do we see the retailers in the spotlight, but also the BBC have been criticised for its " wildly disproportionate" attention to the objections of the programme as reported in The Telegraph today.

As protestors hit a Westminster Tesco store yesterday, the store called on the coalition to "change it's ways" and revised the payment structure for the programme. While cabinet ministers criticise "job snobs" and dismiss critics, the protestors are well supported with a Guardian columnist- Polly Toynbee- which has put the broadsheet right at the epicentre of the storm.

In an article published by the Guardian last thursday, cabinet minister Chris Grayling and Guardian columnist Polly Toynbee went head to head on Politics home where 'open letters' were submitted, Chris Grayling being the instigator, which were then published in full in the Guardian.

Various organisations and unions such as youth and work, and studio school trust, have called on 'high street giants' to put a halt to these unpaid work schemes. Calling the schemes 'forced unpaid labour' and 'slave labour'.

Crisis talks allegedly took place earlier last week at Tesco with employment officials after protestors forced a store to close. Critics argue that the food giant gets relatively free labour and makes no guarantees for work at the end of the programme.

As the pressure mounts for the retailers and stores participating in the scheme. We'd like to hear your thoughts on the matter. Are the protestors a good representative of the public? Or do you support the scheme?

Why not tell us your thoughts and opinions below?