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State Requires Green Cleaning (7-22-08)
HELENA, MT — As part of a broader environmental initiative, the state of Montana is requiring BSCs that clean state buildings to be green, according to the Helena Independent Record.
Kleen King, which cleans the Capitol Complex, now uses a hydrogen-peroxide cleaning product, in place of acid- and solvent-based cleaning products, the story stated.
And its cleaning tools like microfiber mops and cloths are green, too, the story noted.
Dan Prebil, owner of Kleen King, told the Independent Record: "We clean for health first and second for appearance. That's where the industry has to go." Read the rest of the story at HelenaIR.com

Seattle Space Needle Goes Green (7-11-08)
SEATTLE — The city's iconic Space Needle is rising to the challenge to go green, according to a press release posted on EarthTimes.org. The initiative includes environmental efforts around water, recycling, energy conservation, and green cleaning, the story stated. Metropolitan Building Maintenance has implemented its green cleaning program within the Needle, using only environmentally friendly and sustainable cleaning products and techniques, the story noted.
"It isn't a matter of taking the first step to 'go green' anymore — it's a matter of going above and beyond,” stated Peter Beck, vice president of operations at the Space Needle, in the release.

Major New York Hospital Goes Green (7-8-08)
NEW YORK — A major Manhattan hospital recently adopted a hospital-wide green cleaning policy, according to The New York Sun.
New York-Presbyterian Hospital will use the Green Earth line of cleaning products, which is manufactured by Betco, the story noted. Read the rest of the story at New York The Sun

Betco staff will also train 800 hospital employees in the use of Green Seal-certified products, procedures and equipment, the story noted.

Two States Raise Minimum Wage (7-2-08)
Two major Midwestern states, Illinois and Michigan, increased their minimum wages, effective today.
The new minimum wage in Illinois is $7.75 an hour, an increase of 25 cents an hour, according to an Associated Press story posted on the Chicago Tribune website.
Michigan's new minimum wage is $7.40 an hour, an increase of 25 cents an hour, according to an Associated Press story posted on MLive.com.
Increases in the minimum wage affect many building service contractors and in-house service providers, including those who pay more than the minimum wage.

Little demand found for green house cleaning (7-1-08)
SALEM, OR — A survey of six residential cleaning businesses in Salem found that few of their customers are requesting green cleaning services, according to Salem Monthly.

Brian Lindon, Owner of Custom Care, told Salem Monthly: "I'd say less than 10 percent of our customers ask about the chemicals in our cleaning products. ... When we switched to environmentally friendly products, we advertised that fact and thought it would really draw customers for that reason. But it hasn't made much difference."
All six companies cited customer indifference to cleaning products, the story stated.
Read the rest of the story at Salem Monthly.

Seattle Janitors OK deal; averting a strike (6-29-08)

SEATTLE — About 2,800 janitors represented by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 6 in King County have ratified a new four-year contract with building service contractors, according to The Seattle Times.
The contract provides health insurance for new hires outside Seattle after six months, rather than the one year under the current contract, the story stated.
The hourly pay for janitors in Seattle will rise from $11.50 to $13.65 over the contract period, the story noted.
Read the rest of the story at The Seattle Times

Mixture of Cleaning Chemical Sends 21 to the Hospital (6-14-08)

IVANHOE, CA — A mixture of two cleaning chemicals in a lemon packing facility sickened 21 workers Friday, according to the Visalia Times-Delta.

The fumes developed when workers were cleaning the conveyor belt with a fungicide and a parasitic acid, a combination which had been used before at the Klink Citrus Association plant, the story stated. The mixture caused the workers to be extremely ill, experiencing difficulty breathing, nausea, headaches and chest pains — but they didn't pass out.

A company official said the two chemicals may have been mixed "in just the right ratio" to produce the sickening fumes, the story noted. The 21 sickened workers were taken to three area hospitals, the story added. years was decisively rejected by the custodians, the story noted.

School Board Votes to Privatize CustodialContract (6-2-08)
SWANSEA, MA — The Swansea school board voted 3-2 Monday to outsource custodial services, and save as much as $500,000 over three years, according to The Herald News. Fourteen full-time custodians will be laid off on July 1; they may seek employment with the district's new cleaning contractor, the story stated.The school board acted after its recent contract proposal offering a 12 percent raise over three years was decisively rejected by the custodians, the story noted.

Behind the scene of the decision is the end of the connection between some janitors who worked at the school for years and who have come to love their job, as well as the students who have come to feel safe around the janitors and enjoy their company when staying late after school.
Read the rest of the story at The Herald News

Silicon Valley Janitors End their Strike (5-29-2008)
Janitors represented by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) in Silicon Valley ended their nine-day partial strike Wednesday, after building service contractors agreed to a new four-year contract, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
The contract provides a 22 percent pay hike and increased health benefits, the story stated.

About 1,000 of the 6,000 janitors covered by the contract participated in the strike, the story noted.
At the end of the contract in 2012, janitors will be paid $13.44 an hour, the story added.
Read the rest of the story at SF Chronicle.

Janitor Strike in Los Angeles may be Resolved (5-13-08)
Los Angeles County janitors would receive raises averaging more than $1,000 a year for four years and expanded benefits under a tentative labor agreement reached Monday with cleaning contractors and building owners.

The average annual salary for a janitor working in an office building in downtown Los Angeles would be $29,328 in 2012, an almost 18% increase from the current $24,960.

Cleaning The Garage: A Necessary, but Sometimes Toxic Task (5-6-08)
As part of sring cleaning it is a good idea to look into cleaning up your garage. Get rid of the clutter that you have amassed over the years, get rid of things that you have not used in at least the last year. Best way to dispose of most things kept in the garage is to find someone that could make good use of your unwanted belongings. You can post it on online classified ads or aask friends or family members that may be interested. The difficulty with cleaning the garage comes down to the types of stuff we typically keep in the garage are left over home improvement substances such as paint or lawn products. These products are typically a hazard if disposed of in the trash and the more ethical way of removal is to donate it to peole or organizations that would find a use for it.

Registration open for IEHA Convention (4-29-08)
The International Executive Housekeepers Association (IEHA) has opened registration for its 42nd annual Educational Conference and Convention. According to the IEHA website the event is scheduled to take place in Las Vegas from September 7 to 11. Early registration has begone and the costfor the complete package ranges from $325 - $550, depending on if you are a member or not. Complete package allows you to participate in the ISSA convention as well.

The Riviera Hotel will host most IEHA convention events; others will be in the Las Vegas Convention Center.

Judge suing city for $1M after fall on wet courthouse floor (4-14-08)
In Brooklyn, New York a judge plans to file a $1 million lawsuit against the city after slip from a wet floor. The judge apparently fractured his knee on the slip and is suoing the janitor as well as the city. "If the city in some way was negligent, the fact that he is a judge shouldn't preclude him from suing," said Doug Muzzio, a professor of political science at Baruch College. "If he's got a case, he's got a case." The question I have is why is the courthouse being mopped during business hours. Most courthouses have marble floors and are going to be slippery when wet, so it doesn't make sense to mop them during the day. This judge might have a case, but for a million dollars are you kidding me?

59 Immigrant Hotel Workers Arrested in Raid (4-9-08)
Federal immigration officials said they arrested 59 foreign-born workers in a raid yesterday at the Lansdowne Resort in Loudoun County. The officials said the detainees, all from Latin America, were suspected of having used fraudulent or stolen documents to obtain jobs at the hotel and golf resort.

Mark McGraw, a senior regional official with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said in a statement that the raid was part of a "nationwide aggressive pursuit of unauthorized workers and employers who violate the law." Companies that use "cheap, illegal alien labor as a business model should be on notice that ICE is dramatically enhancing its enforcement efforts," he said. ICE officials did not say whether action would be taken against the managers or owners of the resort, which is operated by Benchmark Hospitality International. Full article from Washington Post

Wal-Mart Canada is Selling Green Cleaning Products (4-2-08)

Wal-Mart Canada has begun selling GreenLine private-label green cleaning products, according to a press release posted on Newswire.ca. The GreenLine includes six products: an all-purpose cleaner, glass cleaner, bathroom cleaner, toilet bowl cleaner, concentrated liquid laundry detergent and fabric softener. Each product is biodegradable, phosphate-free and contains no dyes or artificial fragrances. Prices range from $2.78 to $7.43. Certified by Environmental Choice's EcoLogo program, a leading North American standard, the products have been independently certified to be safe and environmentally preferable. Full Article

Pool Cleaning Service, Do you need One?(3-9-08)
This article gives you some details about how a pool cleaning service acan help maintain your pool and how much you can expect to pay. It is recommended to get your pool cleaning at least once a month, but that can vary depeding on the rate of utilization of the pool. Some of the services they can provide are testing and balancing the water chemistry, vacuuming, brushing the sides of the pool, emptying skimmer baskets, cleaning the filter as needed and checking to make sure that all the equipment -- such as the timer and pump -- are working efficiently.You can read the full article at the OrlandoSentinal.com

Cleaning executives sentenced in federal fraud case (3-4-08)
Three executives of a national janitorial service were sentenced Monday to prison terms and ordered to pay millions of dollars in restitution after defrauding the federal government of employment taxes owed on behalf of hundreds of illegal immigrant workers. Want to read

The practice of paying cash wages to workers deprived the government of about $18.6 million in employment taxes, according to the indictment against the three executives. Read the rest of the article at Mlive.com

World Contract Cleaning Services Market to Reach US$155.3 Billion by 2010, According to a New Report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc (2-28-08)
World Contract Cleaning Services market is forecast to maintain a CAGR of 3.9% over the 2001-2010 period to reach US$155.3 billion by 2010. Offices dominate the global market for Contract Cleaning Services, with a share estimated at 31.6% in 2007. In terms of growth, however, Residential Dwellings are forecast to surpass all other end-use sectors for Contract Cleaning Services, with a projected CAGR of 4.36% over 2001-2010. Read the rest at PRWeb

Hospital cleaning services require more attention. (2-23-08)

This is a very obvious statement when considering the facts that there are potentially contagious fatal diseases that can be contracted from some rooms in hospitals. It is also very important that janitorial services that are contracted to clean hospitals understand what they are getting into and for that reason bid accurately. There should not be any low balling for contracting hospital jobs, because the last thing anyone wants is for a employee to contract a serious illness from negligence in training. But according to a letter to the editor for The Vancouver Sun a metro hospital fails its cleanliness test. Because of the side effects that could result from unclean hospital, it is important for every company to train their employees in cleaning each hospital rooms as necessary.  Full article in The Vancouver Sun -->

Green Cleaning: Why all the Hype? (1-30-08)
In a report by Air Quality Sciences the importance of green cleaning products is presented. The report describes the types of volatile organic compounds (VOC) and particulate emissions that are released by cleaning chemicals. This results in a poor indoor air quality and results in respiration complications such as allergies and asthma attacks. The report also points out the fact that homes and schools as well as other buildings that use non-green cleaning products have poor air quality.

While most manufacturers and cleaning companies have learned the importance of green cleaning products, there are those that use the word “green” simply for marketing purposes. They can use words such as “natural” or “green” with out actually being safe. But the benefits from green cleaning products clearly out weigh the cost difference, which by the way has decreased in recent years.

Office cleaners fighting for pay rights (1-28-08)
As reported by “The Star”, employees in Toronto are joining unions and fighting for better pays and for fair treatment. The leading union group, Service Employees International Union (SEIU), is fighting for the rights of janitors throughout North America with their slogan Justice for Janitors. While two janitorial companies - Hurley and Unicco - of the big 4 companies that own 75% of janitorial contracts in Toronto have signed city-wide agreements, Omni and Hallmark have not. The janitors are fighting for fair payment. Full Article at TheStar.com

Steps for improving/decorating your house (1-16-08)

  1. Step One: Get rid of clutter.
    Take a look around the house and get rid of anything that is not used or won't be used. Get rid of old, unnecessary paper. Things that can't be thrown away can be put in a bin or clear plastic bag and placed in closet or garage. Labeling bins or bags helps when you need to look for something.
  2. Step Two: Get to cleaning. for starters hope that your house/apartment doesn't look like a college dorm room. Probably doesn't so first thing to clean would be the floors. If its carpet, think back to when was the last time you got them carpet cleaned. Anything longer than a year will defenitely require immediate attention, although it depends on what kind of household you're apart of.
  3. Step Three: Get to decorating – Find some colorful throw pillows for the chairs or sofa. Then get crazy with it and find some of your favorite colorfull decorating items.
  4. Step Four: Take a look at the entire house from the outside. Look at the front of the house and make some changes or look for things that need work, such as grass that can be mowed.



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