CMM Weekly News Recap-November 15, 2019

November 15, 2019

This week’s news proved the importance of proper training in the handling of cleaning solutions. The general manager of a restaurant died after inhaling a mixture of bleach and acid that a restaurant employee had unwittingly used to clean the kitchen floor.Although the two cleaning products would have been fine to use on their own, mixing them created toxic fumes that sent 14 people to the hospital.

Training cleaning staff on the proper use of cleaning chemicals, including following dilution instructions, can help avoid hazmat situations. Wearing PPE such respirators and disposable masks over the nose and mouth can protect workers from lung damage due to frequent exposure to bleach, ammonia, and other cleaning chemicals.

Regulatory issues also were prominent in the news this week. Legislators in Montgomery County, Maryland, passed a bill that requires employers to provide at least 30 hours of work a week to custodial staff in office buildings that are 350,000 square feet or larger. The Service Employees International Union Local 32BJ endorsed the legislation, saying it allows custodians in charge of large properties to earn a living wage without needing to find additional part-time work. Opponents of the bill argue that while it will benefit many janitorial workers by giving them additional hours and benefits, it will hurt other workers who are laid off as a result of employers paring down staffing. They say the bill may also increase operation costs for commercial buildings and raise facility vacancy rates across the county.

Nationwide, the cleaning industry may be feeling an employment crunch if the U.S. Supreme Court decides the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is illegal. This program, which began in 2012, protects immigrant children who were brought to the United States by their undocumented parents from deportation. The cleaning industry employs many immigrant workers and is often seeking additional staff due to the low unemployment rate.

Have a good weekend! But before you sign out, take the time to vote for your favorite innovative cleaning and maintenance product featured at ISSA Show North America 2019 in Las Vegas, November 18 -21. CMM will be featuring news from the show all next week.


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