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Cleaning as an afterthought

Yesterday, I was enjoying a coffee and a catch up with a friend in one of Hove’s many coffee shops. It was pleasing to see one of the coffee shop staff using his initiative and doing a little cleaning. However, as with many staff who do a bit of cleaning as a small part of their job, he was neither trained nor equipped for the task. This leads to employees cleaning in their workplace as they would clean at home – which is inappropriate, unhygienic and hazardous.

Yesterday, for example, the chap looked to be using a tea towel to do some dusting of the seating area. He then popped into the toilet to dampen the tea towel in the basin before dragging one of the chairs round behind the food and serving counter. He then stood on the chair, stretched up and dusted the ceiling light fitting. It was directly above the glass display counter containing  cakes and pastries, and where the coffee is prepared. He jumped down and dragged the chair back and tucked it neatly back where it had come from.

Just the sort of thing he may do in his own home. Enthusiastic and admirable intentions from the hard working cafe employee, but oblivious to health and safety, hygiene, and cross contamination infringements. And the cafe manager is probably not knowledgeable in such matters either.

Correct cleaning procedures and training should form part of all businesses processes.

Employing an external cleaning company like us is not always appropriate, and in a small cafe I agree that the cafe staff should take responsibility for the cleaning. But they need to follow proper, correct procedures.

The general cleanliness in many of the food and drink establishments across our city leave a lot to be desired… but that’s a whole other blog subject!

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