Revelations that the workplace sickness is costing the Government millions of dollars in sick leave alongside lost productivity are behind growing calls for the introduction of a National Standard for the NZ cleaning industry.That's right. Regulate my competitors out of business and save the country $5 billion in social costs! Believe me! All that's standing between New Zealand and the end of sickies is national standards and regulations on the cleaning industry!
"There are government departments spending over $1 million each year on sick leave payments which we believe can be reduced and not only provide healthier workplaces, but save taxpayers this expense," said Crest Cleans' managing director Grant McLauchlan.
Figures released under the Official Information Act that Crest has sighted, shows that the NZ Police topped the list of government departments for sick leave spending over $21 million during the 2009/2010 financial year.
Of the 58 government departments that responded to questions about costs being incurred as a result of workplace illness, 17 spent over $1 million in annual sick leave payments.
"Crest believes that there is a significant opportunity to reduce these costs and put a renewed focus back onto the health element instead of solely looking at the safety message," said Mr McLauchlan.
"Show me another NZ industry sector with an annual spend of $1 billion that does not have any minimum standards. Commercial cleaning has impact in all corners of our economy from business, to health and education. The loss to our economic output and productivity from poor hygiene practices warrants review."
Crest Clean believes New Zealand needs a comprehensive set of National Standards to tidy up the cleaning industry and is pleased that the Ministry of Economic Development is looking into this. However there is no time-frame around the introduction which is frustrating for the cleanng industry.
"With recent reports that ill-health is costing the economy at least $5 billion a year and affecting the country's productivity levels, the sooner these National Standards are introduced, the sooner we can see workers health improve and taxpayer dollars saved," Mr McLauchlan said.
I'm not sure I've seen a call quite as shameless as this one. Kudos to you, Crest Cleaning!