GMB claims government cuts left NHS cleaning services ‘woefully underprepared’ for Covid


GMB, the union for NHS workers, has called for urgent investment in cleaning services as the 2019/20 ERIC data reveals the full-time equivalent of almost 1,000 fewer cleaners are employed by the NHS - either directly or outsourced – than in 2010/11. 

The NHS also spent £38m less on cleaning services – a decrease of 3.4% - although this should be balanced against increasing efficiency and productivity gains as Trusts have focused on delivering Lord Carter’s PEP programme.

“The NHS couldn’t function without its cleaning staff. They have been saving lives, often at real personal risk, since day one of the pandemic. Our members tell us that they are overworked, underpaid, and denied access to the right PPE. Some cleaning workers are put under pressure to complete jobs without enough time or the right equipment,” says GMB National Officer, Rachel Harrison.

“As we enter a third lockdown, it is more important than ever that NHS cleaners receive the resources, pay and decent employment standards that they deserve.”


2019/20 ERIC data available here.

Have Your Say

There are currently no comments for this article

Mar 05, 2021 TWITTER
HEFMAUK 1367794403293732864 HEFMA 05:Mar:2021 11:09:32 The government's 1% pay rise proposal for NHS staff has been widely criticised and some say could lead to even worsening staff shortages
Mar 04, 2021 TWITTER
HEFMAUK 1367481461687914500 HEFMA 04:Mar:2021 14:26:01 Expressions of interest are invited for the Expert Hospital Food Panel, to drive forward the recommendations of the Hospital Food Review - deadline is March 26 - more here
Mar 03, 2021 TWITTER
HEFMAUK 1367085406471270400 HEFMA 03:Mar:2021 12:12:14 This week's comms update from NHS England and Improvement for E&F includes more detail about the Online Forum, including a call to submit questions for Edward Argar MP (Minister of State for Health)