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For many years I've been saying that cleaning's a thankless task and while many of us in the industry are doing everything we can to encourage a healthy interaction between the general public and those doing the cleaning, we're not making anything like the headway our hardworking cleaners deserve.
Cleaners have to endure all types of abuse; from the physical and verbal (I can imagine how frightening it must be to be a lone cleaner at the mercy of some of the yobs I read about and see at large myself!) to the abuse of the facilities they're about to clean or have already cleaned.
Why do some members of the public think it's OK to leave rubbish all over the place for others to clean up, who'll drop food or leave it smeared over seats without any attempt to clean it up themselves, or even vandalise equipment and overturn rubbish bins?
Yesterday was 'Thank your Cleaner day', set up to recognise the hardworking cleaners who often work outside office hours, which means that as they're out of sight, they're out of mind too. I love the initiative, which is gaining attention and has consequently spread through much of the world. The idea that we can honour our cleaners on their own special day is an excellent one and as far as I'm concerned we really can't do enough to make them feel special.
But in terms of the name, I think we should be thanking our cleaners every day, don't you? I go out of my way to smile at and chat to any cleaners I come across, as they go about their work. I feel it's the very least I can do. I do hope you do the same and encourage others to follow suit, as it must be soul destroying for our cleaners to feel ignored by the very people they spend their working hours keeping safe and healthy, don't you think?
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17th October 2019