Letter: Don't mock the modern mop

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The Independent Online
Sir: I wonder what the Commission for Racial Equality is trying to achieve in the advertisement carried in Wednesday last's Independent ('Who says ethnic minorities can't get jobs? There are openings everywhere', 7 September). What it does achieve is to insult many people, ethnic and non-ethnic, who take great pride in their role of making our buildings clean, safe and pleasant places to live and work in. It also reinforces the tired stereotype that people become cleaning operatives when they are incapable of doing anything else.

The UK cleaning industry today has carefully controlled recruitment policies, extensive training programmes and dedicated employees carrying out important duties. I implore visitors to Terminal 1 at Heathrow to talk to ISS operatives (on site 24 hours). They will see a fine example of these policies in practice, and a happy mix of ethnic and non-ethnic workers.

Yours faithfully,


Managing Director

ISS Cleaning Services UK

Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire