Housekeepers face specific risks during regular tasks

Hotel staff members play an important role in Wilmington's booming travel industry, but they face several risks as they go about their daily duties. It is up to each hotel to implement a safety plan that puts workers' needs first. Relaying the protocol during training and again throughout the course of employment can help to ensure that everyone remains as safe as possible.

One of the most grueling job duties in the hospitality industry is housekeeping. These individuals face some very real hazards that can become critical. Even though this is a competitive industry, there is never an excuse to put guest comfort before employee safety.

Daily cleaning hazards

Just the basic task of cleaning a hotel room can lead to serious issues. One hazard has to do with the products used to clean. Bathroom cleaner and similar cleaning agents can cause respiratory conditions and skin irritation.

The material safety data sheets must be available for each chemical. This gives workers who have to use them the ability to minimize risks.

During the cleaning of the rooms, workers might be exposed to bodily fluids and unknown substances. They should have gloves and other personal protective equipment. In fact, wearing gloves when changing out bedsheets and towels might be a good idea.

Additional tasks

Sometimes, housekeepers have to flip mattresses or move them around in a room. This can lead to muscle injuries if the lifting isn't handled properly. Heavy cleaning, which might involve moving furniture, can lead to serious musculoskeletal injuries. These additional tasks might also lead to stress when the management doesn't plan proper time for them to get done.

Risk of violence and harassment

These workers face the risk of violence from unhappy guests. They can also be subjected to harassment. These situations must be covered by hotel policies so all workers know that they don't have to deal with these types of issues while they are working. It must be clear that they need to report the issues, and steps must be taken to address the problems when they creep up.

Injured hotel workers have the same rights to workers' compensation as people in other industries. This includes being covered to receive medical care to treat injuries. Workers who have to take time off work to heal may also be eligible for partial wage replacement while they are off.

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