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Olympic cleaners living in a 'slum'
Will Jackson, ninemsn
17:00 AEST Wed Jul 18 2012

The temporary accommodation for cleaners at London's Olympic village has been described as a "slum" and compared to a "prison camp".

The East London campsite has up to 10 workers sharing each leaky portable cabin with one toilet for every 25 people and 75 to each shower, the Daily Mail reports.

Some who had come from overseas to work during the Olympics decided to head home after seeing the "horrible" accommodation and "filthy" showers and toilets.

"I couldn’t believe it when I saw the places people were sleeping," Spanish student Andrea Murnoz told the Daily Mail.

"When I first saw the metal gates and the tall tower in the middle, it reminded me of a prison camp. It looks horrible.

"I was thinking I would apply for a job, but I have changed my mind."

Cleaners at the camp have signed gag orders preventing them from speaking to the media but one worker from Hungary who had nowhere else to live said conditions were "very bad".

"The toilets are dirty and the space is very little," the worker said.

The local council that approved plans for the camp reportedly had reservations, saying the toilet and shower facilities were "unlikely to be adequate" and the accommodation was "cramped".

But the plans got the green light because concerns about the housing and welfare of the workers were not "justifiable reasons for refusing planning permission".

Craig Lovett, a spokesman for Spotless International Sevices which runs the camp, said the number of toilets and showers exceeded requirements.

"Many of our staff have come from areas where there is extremely high unemployment and are very happy to be working in the Games," Mr Lovett said.

"There will always be a couple of disgruntled people on site, but it’s a shame they didn’t come to talk to us to air their grievances because there are certainly processes in place for them to do that."

Source: Daily Mail.
Author: Will Jackson. Approving editor: Fiona Willan.

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