26 March 2020 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal
The British Cleaning Council (BCC) is repeating its call for cleaners to be recognised as essential 'critical or key workers' during the pandemic after the nation's cleaning workforce was praised in the Commons yesterday.
Both Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn paid tribute in Parliament to the "extraordinary" role of cleaners during the coronavirus crisis.
They were taking part in Prime Minister's Questions when Corbyn praised the "unsung heroes" of the public sector who "keep us safe" during the outbreak.
He added: "I'd like to pay special mention to one group that are hugely ignored, forgotten and decried as unskilled workers - cleaners. All around the country and in this building, (they) are doing their best to keep our places hygienic and safe."
In his reply, the Johnson said: "I agree with him very much about what he said about cleaners - they do an extraordinary job and they deserve all the protection and support we can give them in this difficult time."
Chairman of the BCC, Paul Thrupp, said: "Everyone in the cleaning sector will appreciate our vital work being recognised by the country's leading figures.
"All too often, the role of cleaners is invisible and forgotten yet our work couldn't be more important, particularly now in the fight against coronavirus, and this reinforces our call for cleaners to be given essential 'critical or key worker' status due to the need for high hygiene standards during the pandemic."
The BCC recently published a report saying that the cleaning sector forms 5 per cent of the workforce.