Financial services firms in London have been urged to increase the pay and conditions of their cleaners with unions alleging that many receive only just above the minimum wage and get no sick pay.
The Transport & General Workers Union has widened its campaign for better standards for cleaners to the City, complaining that the disparity between pay at the top and at the bottom was intolerable.
Under the slogan ‘Clean Up the City’, it has launched a round of action supported by community groups and the US union the SEIU, which has made a priority of improving janitors’ pay.
The T&G has estimated that up to 3,000 cleaners in the City are paid less than the London living wage, get no sick pay or pensions and receive only the legal minimum holidays of 20 days. It says that many are forced to take on two jobs to earn a living wage.
Tony Woodley, T&G general secretary, said: “Some of the people working in these buildings will get more as a Christmas bonus than some cleaners make in their working lives.
“We want justice for people who keep these buildings running, cleaners toiling for a pittance to make these places fit to work in. Just a tiny slice of the profits made in this Square Mile could make a vast difference to cleaners,” he said.