A report just released by New York City Councilman Ritchie Torres will make you think twice before pulling those crisp sheets up to your face in a New York hotel, wiping your mouth with that folded white napkin in a restaurant or using hospital linens.
The report, Irresponsible Industrial Laundries: A Major Public Health Threat, claims that city hotels, hospitals and restaurants don’t adhere to cleanliness standards. Incidences cited in the report are disturbing: only visual inspections for restaurant napkins and tablecloths; hotel sheets re-ironed and returned unwashed, unsanitized hospital carts transporting clean hospital linens.
To make city laundries clean up their act, Councilman Torres is spearheading a bill that will regulate the area’s industrial laundries and require them to have licenses. Of approximately 50 industrial laundries in NYC, only five area laundries are voluntarily certified by industry groups for sanitary practices.
Laundry industry associations, Healthcare Laundry Accreditation Council (HLAC) and Textile Rental Services Association (TRSA), offer voluntary accreditation processes for the industrial and commercial laundry sector.
Council Torres’ proposed bill would require New York laundries to receive city licenses to ensure the quality of their laundered goods. Laundries would be subject to Department of Consumer Affairs’ inspections. If approved, the bill will place the area’s industrial laundries under the control of New York City’s Consumer Affairs Department.
The bill is expected to be law within a year.
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