Going Green

Walking around the Cleaning Show at ExCeL earlier this year it was interesting to note just how many organisations were promoting their green credentials.

There is no escaping the fact that plastic has been in the news recently; and WAMITAB is proud to be participating in a campaign along with the Cleaning & Hygiene Suppliers Association (CHSA) and the Cleaning Support Services Association (CSSA) to tackle the issue of plastic in the sector's supply chain. A joint statement reads: 'plastic is embedded in every part of the cleaning and hygiene supply chain, from the manufacture of plastic sacks and the bottles containing cleaning chemicals to the packaging of individual products. This is why we have come together to address the challenge – an effective solution is only possible through cross sector collaboration'.

Chris James said: "Our next step in the development of the Cleaning Industry Plastics Pledge is to understand better the way in which the plastics are used so we can develop a route map for evolving all in the cleaning and hygiene sector toward the most sustainable plastics and their re-use and re-cycling. Once developed and widely adopted, the Cleaning Industry Plastics Pledge will enable us to bring together and accelerate the good work already being done in our sector to make sure our use of plastic is sustainable."

A research report published by the British Cleaning Council (BCC) in March 2019 identified the four sub-industries that make up the cleaning industry: facilities management,

landscape services; waste and resource management and

cleaning activities. The sector employs some 914,000 people and contributed around £50 billion to the economy in 2016. Consequently, a commitment to reduce the use of plastics in the sector has the potential to make a big impact and along with the government’s 25 year green plan it means waste and resource management is firmly on the agenda.

With ambitious targets in place it is clear that skills will have a key role in making sure the workforce keep up to date with innovations in the sector and new

approaches to cleaning and waste management and recycling. WAMITAB has just added a range of additional specialisms to its Practical Cleaning Skills suite of qualifications, which is designed to support skills development for operatives in the sector. Given the current “green” focus in the sector, it is no surprise to learn that Sustainable Cleaning is one of the 17 new specialisms added to the existing list of 14.

One of the drivers for extending the Practical Cleaning Skills suite of qualifications is that in January 2018, WAMITAB was selected by the Ministry of Justice as the exclusive Awarding Organisation for cleaning, facilities management and waste management qualifications across Her Majesty’s Prison Service establishments in England and Wales. Following a transition period from August 2018, the contract officially went live from Monday 1st April 2019, and we have been working closely with the prisons to implement a range of vocational qualifications to support the delivery of cleaning and waste/recycling services in the prisons and also to provide the prisoners with industry relevant qualifications to help them to secure job upon release.

WAMITAB is also involved in the trailblazer group that is working to develop a healthcare cleaning apprenticeship standard. Cleaning in the health, social and leisure care sectors requires a special emphasis on infection control and we have working with colleagues in the industry to develop a standard at level 2; it is currently in its early stages of development but we hope to have more information to share in the near future.

It is clear that the cleaning industry has a strong focus on innovation whether it is in terms of equipment, materials, techniques or approaches to service delivery to ensure that we can all enjoy a clean and healthy life in the places we live, work and play – and it certain that skills development will always have a key part to play.

WAMITAB Peterbridge House 3 The Lakes Northampton NN4 7HE

Tel: 01604 231950 Email: Web:

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