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In my home town of Epsom I'm so disgusted by the rubbish strewn about at weekends as a result of the previous night's partying (everyone else's - not mine!) that I telephoned the council to complain about it. I realise funds are too tight to employ street cleaners on Saturdays and Sundays and would not wish to pay extra council tax to fund the extra cleaning, so was not expecting a clear path to my office the following week, although the chat I had with the woman responsible for street cleaning did make me feel that at least someone was listening.
I've said it before but it's all down to educating our young people not to litter and not to drink so much that they vomit in the streets. Is enough being done in our schools to let them know that this is not just simply disgusting, but that it's morally wrong and not fair to the rest of us who have to pick our way around it? And are parents doing their bit or are they instead teaching their offspring bad habits?
Clearly the message isn't getting across and I can't help feeling that a night in the cells might just do the trick, for something needs to be done and quickly...
I can't help admiring the man featured in today's newspapers, who's become so fed up with the situation in his Yorkshire village of Hessle, that he's cleaning up the mess himself. Disguised by a mask and cape, he often uses the cover of darkness to do his work, sprinting off into the night when grateful residents try and thank him. I gather he doesn't want to be identified in case he gets into trouble with the authorities!
If you're reading this from outside the UK you might wonder how someone can break the law for collecting litter, when so many litterbugs are allowed to go about their dirty deeds unobstructed. I'm ashamed to admit that this has happened recently, when one of the Phantom Litter Picker's fellow countrymen - also on a mission to clean up our streets - was subsequently fined for the crime of 'picking litter without a licence'.
You wouldn't believe it if you hadn't read it here, would you?
15th March 2012