Less than two weeks ago the Canadian Intern Association reported on HootSuite’s illegal internships and the response that we received from CEO Ryan Holmes following tremendous online backlash and media coverage regarding the company’s unpaid internship program. We commended HootSuite for responding to the issue so promptly and encouraged (both publicly and in a private letter) that they retroactively pay past and present unpaid interns at least minimum wage for hours worked.
We are happy to report that HootSuite will pay all the interns for the time they have worked over the past six months. Holmes released this statement earlier today:
It was brought to my attention on Friday, April 5th that HootSuite had unpaid internship postings on its website that may have been in contravention of the Employment Standards Act of BC,” HootSuite CEO Ryan Holmes said in an emailed statement.
“HootSuite conducted an immediate review with our Talent and Legal team and we have determined that some intern roles may not have been in compliance with Employment Standards Act of BC.
“To completely remove outstanding doubt around this matter, we will immediately rectify the issue by offering full payment, including interest incurred, to unpaid interns who had roles within our company within the last six months that were not in accordance with the ESA BC.
Also notable is HootSuite’s move to revise their internship program to ensure that is in compliance with British Columbia’s Employment Standards Act. On this issue, Holmes added:
HootSuite will continue to offer its internship program, ensuring that future internship positions are compliant with the Employment Standards Act of BC. I remain confident that our program offers young professionals unique opportunities to build their careers and I will proudly continue to provide this option for those interested.
The Canadian Intern Association would once again like to commend HootSuite for its prompt response to the issue from the outset and concerted efforts to compensate their interns for hours worked, in addition to revising their internship program accordingly. We believe that HootSuite sets a great example and as such, strongly encourage other companies to follow their example.