Published: 09/01/2015
The following article by Malin Lernfelt is an abridged version of a piece originally published in the Swedish daily Göteborgs-Posten on December 10, 2014 – click here to read the full article in Swedish.

It’s tough on the body to make 20 beds and scrub 20 bathrooms a day.

It demands a good overall view and a great sense of responsibility to be able to create exactly the atmosphere the hotel wants to offer its guests. And in spite of this those who execute those tasks rarely get the appreciation they deserve. Neither from hotel guests or the hotel management.

Unlike many other occupational groups within the hotel- and restaurant trade the cleaning staff seldom get a tip or a simple thank you. Not even from their bosses who should realize how important their cleaning staff are.

Hotel housekeepers are in fact often invisible regardless how well they are doing their work. Sweden has today one of the world’s highest demands on working pace for hotel housekeepers. Steps that could be taken to improve their working environment are not prioritized even though the hotels make huge profits. To change this the Hotel- and restaurant workers’ union (HRF) is pursuing the campaign “Schysta städvillkor” (Decent conditions for hotel housekeepers) this week as a part of an international movement. Hotel bosses and guests should join us. Not least here in Gothenburg. A decent working environment, fair terms of employment and recognition of the hotel housekeepers’ importance for our event city is the least we can ask for.