The Textile Services Association (TSA) is keeping pressure on the government with the latest open letters to MPs with laundries in their constituencies and personalized letters to senior cabinet ministers to help vulnerable laundries.
The letter was written to persuade the government to give councils permission to include laundry services in the hospitality industry immediately on the list of eligible companies that may request a reduction in council rates. TSA warns that tens of thousands of workers could be forced into the labor market if the government did not take responsibility for one of the UK's oldest industries.
David Stevens wrote: “As the CEO of TSA, which represents the UK laundry industry and its 28,000 employees, I feel I have let them down. We were promised early on in the pandemic that the industry would be looked after, and I confidently passed this message on to our members and believe that it is true. I was wrong. I have one open letter after another to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Prime Minister, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Welfare, the Cabinet, the Ministry of Finance (HMT), the Ministry of Economy, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and others, and the TSA Laundries are encouraged to write to their local MPs.
"All without success.
“Hopefully many of you are already aware of our situation. So far we have received a lot of friendly support, a lot of sympathy and a list of everything that has been done for everyone else, but absolutely no action on the issues that we have raised. I have made hundreds of phone calls to councils, collective bargaining offices, MPs and cabinet officials who all think our circumstances are exceptional. They all understand how important we are when the hotel industry gets back on its feet, and not without laundry. However, they all say that their hands are tied without clear government advice.
“We have the support of UK Hospitality, all major hotel groups, MPs, professional associations and so the list goes on. In fact, nobody disagrees. I even think the government agrees. But apathy seems to have started, they now seem to focus on reopening and have "moved on". Laundries are forgotten.
"Well, our industry could not continue to develop. We are still closed and many are now in desperate financial situations. We only ask that laundries be included in the list of eligible companies that can apply for tariff relief. All councils think we should be on the list, but until the guidelines are clear they won't help.
“Can anyone in the government take responsibility for one of Britain's oldest industries? If not, tens of thousands of workers can be forced into the labor market.
"I just ask for the opportunity to present our case to a cabinet decision maker.
"I honestly don't know what else to do. If you are reading this letter and feel that you can support us, please contact us. One call can be enough to save thousands of jobs. "