The cleaning, hygiene and waste industry has come together to issue a call for sector staff to ‘speak up’ for their industry, help lobby MPs and sign a petition to make cleaning and hygiene a national priority.
The British Cleaning Council and 22 associations from across the industry are frustrated by the lack of interest from MPs (except for Chairman Nigel Mills MP) and political parties in the report by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for the Cleaning and Hygiene Industry, entitled Embedding Effective Hygiene for a Resilient UK.
The report’s recommendations, if implemented, would put cleaning and hygiene at the heart of the national agenda, making the nation much more resilient to current common infections and also much better prepared for future public health emergencies, like the Covid-19 pandemic.
Members of the industry are being asked to download and adapt the pre-written letter below to email to their local MP, and also to sign a petition calling on the Government to implement the report recommendations in full.
Please let us know on firstname.lastname@example.org if you are able to take part. Thank you for your support.
DOWNLOAD THE LETTER HERE:
Download “Letter-for-CS-220223.docx”Letter-for-CS-220223.docx – Downloaded 546 times – 18.13 KB (Please amend your version as needed)
DOWNLOAD THE APPG REPORT HERE:
Download “APPG-REPORT-REPORT-final.pdf”APPG-REPORT-REPORT-final.pdf – Downloaded 450 times – 791.22 KB (Please include this with your email)
TO FIND YOUR MP, CLICK HERE.
TO SIGN THE PETITION, CLICK HERE.
Since the APPG inquiry was first established last autumn, the BCC has sought extensively to engage MPs and the Government about the report with little response so far.
The BCC is now calling for the entire industry to back the drive to promote the APPG report to Government via the nation’s MPs.
The drive takes place under the umbrella of the BCC’s We Clean, We Care campaign, which reflects the pride cleaning staff have in the vital, frontline role they perform, keeping others safe, well and healthy.
BCC Chairman Jim Melvin will address attendees at the Cleaning Show about the initiative and ask them to back the campaign. Information, along with free We Clean, We Care badges, will also be available from the BCC’s stand at the show.
BCC Chairman Jim Melvin said: “I remain incredibly frustrated by the unbelievable lack of interest from MPs and Government in the APPG report. It is a very credible document and deserves to be taken seriously.
“If you believe that cleaning and hygiene should be a national priority, as I and the members of the BCC do, now is the time to speak up on its behalf.
“We are asking colleagues in our industry to contact MPs themselves about this pressing issue. For the avoidance of any doubt, MPs will no longer be able to claim that they weren’t informed about it.
“With flu regularly reappearing and the constant threat of a new Covid variant, we are talking about measures that will protect people’s health and save lives.
“There are arguably almost 218,000 reasons why MPs should collectively want to ensure that the nation does everything in its power to learn the lessons of the pandemic and reflect a new national process and culture around cleaning and hygiene for the future, in order that we significantly reduce the possibility of revisiting the tragic events of the last few years and causing more lives to be lost.
“We clean but do we collectively care enough to take part? We truly need your help please or do we simply accept this lack of involvement from those in power as the norm and agree that this is where we seemingly sit?
“I genuinely do not think that is what staff in our sector believe, and I hope that we demonstrate it across our great industry by active involvement in this campaign.”
They report recommendations are also being backed by:
- The Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE)
- The Association of Building Cleaning Direct Service Providers (ABCD)
- The Association of Healthcare Cleaning Professionals (AHCP)
- The British Chemicals Association (BCA)
- The British Association of Cleaning in Higher Education (BACHE)
- The British Institute of Cleaning Science (BICSc)
- The Business Services Association (BSA)
- The British Toilet Association (BTA)
- The British Pest Control Association (BPCA)
- The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH)
- The Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM)
- The Cleaning and Hygiene Suppliers Association (CHSA)
- The Cleaning & Support Services Association (CSSA)
- The Domestic Cleaning Alliance (DCA)
- The Federation of Window Cleaners (FWC)
- The Industrial Cleaning Machine Manufacturers` Association (ICMMA)
- Keep Britain Tidy
- The National Carpet Cleaners Association
- The National Association of Wheeled Bin Washers (NAWBW)
- The Textile Services Association (TSA)
- The United Kingdom Housekeepers Association (UKHA)
- The Worshipful Company of Environmental Cleaners (WCEC)
The APPG inquiry last year looked into the role of cleaning and hygiene during the Covid-19 pandemic.
It took evidence from the BCC, the Royal Society for Public Health and a number of experts, cleaning and hygiene clients, and senior colleagues across the whole of the industry.
It made 11 key recommendations, summarised below:
- The establishment of a joint Government-industry preparedness team to plan for public health emergencies.
- Minimum levels of cleaning materials and equipment to be agreed and made available in readiness.
- Thought to be given to how to increase production during a public health emergency.
- Key frontline worker status must be bestowed upon cleaning operatives and staff working in supply and manufacturing if a pandemic happens.
- Urgent consideration to be given to making cleaning staff eligible for the Skilled Worker Visa scheme.
- Minimum standards for hygiene infrastructure and cleaning in diverse venues to be agreed.
- A standard qualification for cleaning to be developed within the Apprenticeship Levy.
- Training budgets for cleaning operatives should be adequate.
- Government communications around hygiene in times of pandemic should be clear, consistent, sustained, timely, relevant and specific.
- The Government should use behavioural science-based communication campaigns to promote hygienic behaviour to the public.
- The Government should support the cleaning and hygiene industry in realigning perceptions of the industry.
A diverse expert group held an extremely productive roundtable event in January to discuss how to take the report forward, before representatives met and feedback to the APPG.