Amanda Walters: protecting low-paid migrant cleaners during the pandemic
Low-paid migrant cleaners have been badly affected by the impact of Covid-19. Many have lost employment under social distancing measures and are unable to access government support schemes, whilst others are putting their health and lives at risk on a daily basis in order to disinfect buildings from the virus without appropriate PPE.
Community campaigner Amanda Walters from Hackney, London, has been building a labour community alliance of trade unions and community organisations that work with low-paid migrant cleaners. The aim of the alliance is to create a unified force that can organise for the interests of cleaners and ensure their protection as key workers during this time. Amanda will use her grant to develop this work.
This will include running an online listening campaign for cleaners to see what their key issues are at this time and where they most need help; creating an online platform to facilitate organising and campaigning through the lockdown; carrying out targeted advertising to reach as many cleaners as possible; and creating an online training site with a series of videos offering advice and guidance on how to campaign effectively. Amanda will collate the resulting data to focus on key issues and then campaign to influence policy. Amanda's Churchill Fellowship to Brazil and the USA in 2018 explored best practice in building a powerful movement of low-wage migrant workers. It was supported by The Linbury Trust.