ITV aired the last episode this week of the series Cleaning Up starring Sheridan Smith and whilst we are fans of the actress and watched this fictional series, it did a terrible job of portraying both cleaners themselves and cleaning as a profession.
It showed Sheridan Smith’s character fixing a carpet stain using a marker pen and drinking alcohol whilst working, another character saying she did not clean desks, cleaners that needed to have information translated as they did not understand English, breaches of client confidentiality and ultimately illegal activities.
There has been lots of talk about this programme within the cleaning sector, the majority of which has not been positive however what the show did do is highlight the ‘invisible’ nature of an unsung, unrecognised and very often underappreciated workforce that keep our work spaces and public areas hygienically clean and the economy moving.
Sheridan Smith spent time with cleaners in Canary Wharf in preparation for the show and was reported to have said “I met a lot of cleaners, it was interesting when we did the scenes where the stockbrokers were arriving for work and the cleaners were still there as they did not even notice us, we were unseen to them.”
How well do you know your cleaners, do you even give them more than a passing glance?
The true value of cleaners is that they make the areas they clean healthier spaces, contribute to the wellbeing of people that use the spaces and create a clean, hazard free and welcoming environment for all that use it.
Did you watch Cleaning Up? Let us know what you thought.