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June 3, 2013 | by  | in News |
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No Clean Record

Fresh from allegations of sexual assault, the University’s contracted cleaning company OCS is facing further strife, following an incident where one cleaner strangled another in a University bathroom.

Contracts Manager for Facilities Management André Kilian stated that OCS, the cleaning company, “advised the University of an incident involving two of its cleaning staff on Friday 24 May”, and that two people involved in the incident have not returned to Victoria University campuses since that date. However, the incident was reported on the Overheard @ Vic Facebook page on Thursday 23 May, one day before the cleaning company’s account.

“Overheard … an employee being interviewed about how one of the cleaners tried to strangle someone this morning,” a student posted.

“There was a lady who from what I gathered was a cleaner … and a more senior looking staff member interviewing her quietly and from what I could hear they were talking about an altercation between a cleaner and another female this morning in one of the bathrooms where someone was being strangled.”

Despite two serious incidents involving cleaners from the company so far, Kilian said it was “too soon to comment on whether the University will renew the contract in 2016”.

Kilian said that Victoria is “committed to providing a safe environment for [Victoria] staff and students”, and was satisfied that they were doing so.

“Our understanding is that the cleaning company has appropriate processes in place to deal with incidents of this kind and has assured
us these are being followed.”

As recently reported by Salient, a cleaner who worked at Cumberland Hall of Residence had been banned from the University after watching multiple students shower through a gap in a wall, and attempting to gain access to their rooms.

While Salient was advised that the cleaning company had “removed [the cleaner who sexually harassed students at Cumberland] from cleaning duties at all Victoria residential halls and instructed [him] not to return to any University sites”, one of the women who reported the cleaner’s harassment said that she had seen him working around the Kelburn campus after he had been removed from Cumberland.

OCS was contracted by Victoria from December 2012 for three years. They had not released a statement by the time Salient went to print.

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