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Many of us in the cleaning industry will have seen those we're talking to try and suppress a laugh when we tell them what we do, since they don't see cleaning as being of any importance. A useful retort to anyone making a comment about it is: "Imagine what will very quickly happen to our surroundings if the cleaners go on strike?" This Getty picture, courtesy of Spanish publication El Pais, proves the point!
It shows the Spanish city of Barcelona's El Prat Airport, which handles around 40 million passengers a year, some five days after cleaners downed tools earlier this month in protest over changes to work schedules and holidays. I understand that it is now clean and litter-free but that since cleaning staff are planning another strike in the immediate run-up to Christmas - unless they can resolve their dispute with their employer, Valoriza, and the airport operator, Aeno, in the meantime - this is exactly the scenario that may greet you if you're using the airport over that time.
My first thought was that nothing like this amount of rubbish should have been allowed to build up. None of us should be leaving litter about anyway, but if you're inclined to do something like that, surely knowing the cleaners are on strike should prompt a change in behaviour? And weren't any of the airport's other staff inclined to step in and at least make the area safe - or didn't rules and regulations allow them to?
El Pais has accused cleaners of having scattered what appears to be shredded newspaper, to add to the mess (and, perhaps, help prove a point!) but its reporters have also taken an interesting video clip showing lots of other rubbish, along with scenes proving that some travellers did indeed try to use the bins but that when these became too full, resorted to leaving their rubbish around the bin areas for later collection: www.ccaa.elpais.com
Scary eh? If you're travelling anywhere over the holidays - or at any time, I do hope you manage to avoid environments such as this - and remember... if you see a cleaner at work, a smile and a 'thank you' can go an awfully long way...
STOP PRESS: ISSA/Interclean 2018 show dates amendment
Shortly before broadcast last week we received a press release regarding ISSA/Interclean's expansion for 2018, and in sharing the news with you, also shared the incorrect dates we'd been given - sorry! The correct dates for this event are: 15th, 16th, 17th and 18th May and they are in our diary of important industry events near the bottom of the right-hand column of each issue of Cleanzine.
If you're organising an industry event and would like it included in our diary section, do please send us the details and we'll do our best to include the information. Also, do ensure that we're on your mailing lists for show updates and press information, so we can include regular editorial coverage too.
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8th December 2016