Melbourne Football Club has copped a barrage of criticism after an advertisement for an unpaid role in its football department surfaced.
The Demons posted the ad that called for 3-4 people to volunteer as part of the club’s Football Technology Pathway Program over 11 months for between 10-25 hours per week.
“An exciting opportunity has become available for 3-4 individuals to volunteer within the club’s football department for the 2021 season,” the job advertisement reads.
“This program would best suit students or graduates from either a Sports Science, Information Technology, Statistical or Multimedia background.”
The ad drew widespread condemnation on social media, with many criticising the club for the amount of work expected to be undertaken for free.
This should be absolutely illegal and I hope Melbourne retract their position here. I've been fortunate enough to do an unpaid internship at a sports club and I can tell you right now my experience at the Raiders was nothing short of amazing. pic.twitter.com/LX4Q309VSa
— Brent Ford (@BrentFord26) December 1, 2020
An AFL club advertising for volunteers to work "10-25 hours per week" in an area of a football department shouldn't be happening in 2021 with the money now in footy. It's not work experience its an 11 month part time job with no pay.
— Ryan Reynolds (@Reynolds_R) November 30, 2020
Hey @melbournefc – don’t do this.
Do not ask people to work for you for free for 10-25 hours per week in your football department.
— Paige Cardona (@paigecardona) December 1, 2020
The Melbourne Football Club have responded to the criticism saying that parts of the ad were poorly-worded and “lacked clarity”.
Demons CEO Gary Pert told the Herald Sun that “the scope and intent of the program was to keep the time frame flexible, to allow us to accommodate students at any month of the proposed period”.
“To be clear, this pathway program does not run for a total of 11 months. Instead, the duration of the program is predicated on the student’s individual course requirements and no student’s hours will exceed the amount they need to complete their university unit.”
The role is not currently advertised on the club’s website.