UK: Outsourced cleaners to strike; allege public institutions fail to hold private co's to account for not paying living wage

Author: Tom Wall, The Observer, Published on: 6 August 2018

"Cleaners to strike in first action by UK’s low-paid ‘army’", 5 August 2018

[C]leaners will walk out simultaneously across five different sites... [The] largely migrant [...] workers hope the strike will pile pressure on the public institutions they claim are refusing to take responsibility for low wages paid to outsourced cleaning staff... 

Although they are employed by the facilities company OCS Group, the cleaners claim the MoJ [Ministry of Justice] is ultimately responsible for their pay...

Workers cleaning Kensington and Chelsea town hall, who are employed by Amey, a private contractor, have the same complaints... 

[C]leaners from eight exclusive private hospitals and medical centres, run by the health firm HCA UK, are set to join further coordinated action...

The MoJ said: “We strictly enforce the living wage in all our contracts but specific pay and terms are for employers to agree directly with their employees.”

OCS Group said it would not be commenting.

A Kensington and Chelsea Council spokesperson said: “These cleaners are employed by Amey and we don’t control what Amey pays their staff, though we do expect them to pay their staff appropriately.”

An Amey spokesperson said: “Our contract with the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea predates the voluntary London living wage, so Amey is paid on the basis of the National Minimum Wage.”

HCA UK said it was unable to comment on the terms of employment of “colleagues not employed by HCA UK”.

Read the full post here

Related companies: Amey HCA OCS Group