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Janitors working without proper protection

June 13, 2013

CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA — Janitors employed by the City of Cape Town say they have not been given the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) like masks and other clothing when they clean communal toilets, according to the Independent Online.

One janitor, who remained anonymous out of fear of losing her job, said she has been required to empty containers of feces without a mask or gloves, the article stated.

"It is a disgrace that while some municipal workers tasked with cleaning toilets daily are deprived of face masks because of stock shortages, placing their health and wellbeing at risk and violating labor legislation," said Social Justice Coalition General Secretary Phumeza Mlungwana.

According to the article, mayoral committee member for utility services Ernest Sonnenberg insisted that the city’s expanded public works program issued every janitor, as well as its permanent staff, with protective clothing when they were appointed.

"We constantly assess the effectiveness of such systems. As such, we are currently looking into these reports and will rectify any situations of missing equipment if found to be accurate," the department said in a statement.

Click here to read the article in its entirety.