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    Understaffed shops struggling to uphold cleaning rules

    © Belga

    Big fashion retailers are not correctly following sanitary measures due to a lack of sufficient staff on the floor, a trade union warned on Monday.

    Trade union CNE said that the reopening of shops last week showed that reduced staff working at major retailers’ shops were struggling to uphold new cleaning and sanitary rules on top of their regular tasks.

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    “On average, in shops of big retailers, there’s no more than 60% of employees at work, often less than that,” union representative Jalil Bourhidane said, according to RTL.

    “Understaffed workers do not have time to follow-through with these heavy cleaning procedures,” he added, saying that some of the smaller shops were even operating with a single employee.

    Bourhidane said that the changing rooms were one of the areas of concern, as he said that staff were not cleaning them more than a few times a day.

    “In some shops, half of the changing rooms are closed while in others they are cleaned only two or three times per day, not more,” he said, adding that some boutiques had chosen to shut down the changing rooms altogether.

    In a number of shops, clothes tried on by a customer were put back on the racks too quickly, he said, adding that some managers pressured staff to do so.

    “We thought that [tried-on clothes] would not be put back on display before 24 hours but we have been told of pressures coming from managers so that this delay is shortened,” he said.

    The CNE said called on big retail brands to order the closure of changing rooms in their shops and to increase the number of workers in shops.

    The measure would bring relief to members of personnel who are “already exhausted, only a week after reopening,” Bourhidane said.

    Gabriela Galindo
    The Brussels Times