Fair pay for Royal cleaners

Visitors outside the gate at Buckingham Palace were asked to support the call to give “disgracefully low-paid” royal cleaners a living wage.

Amidst high security for the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, the Public and Commercial and Services union was outside the gates of Buckingham Palace from 12 noon to 2pm on 28 April 2011 with a giant ‘fair pay for royal cleaners’ card for members of the public to sign.

PCS General Secretary, Mark Serwotka commented: “While the royals were preparing for the prince’s lavish wedding, our members were and are being treated like paupers.”

The London living wage is paid to cleaners in the houses of parliament. However cleaners in Buckingham Palace, St James’s Palace and Clarence House are paid just £6.45 an hour. They are looking a £1.40 an hour increase to match the the ‘London living wage’.

The royal cleaners are employed by two private contractors, KGB Holdings and Greenzone, but the union believes ultimate responsibility rests with the Royal Household, which receives around £30 million a year from taxpayers – half of which is for upkeep of the occupied palaces.

“The royal family is seen as a major contributor to the tourist industry and many people visit London specifically to see the palaces. We’ll be asking them to show their support for the people on poverty pay who keep these palaces clean.” Serwotka said.

The union has also launched an online petition.


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