Sunday, March 7, 2010

Unhygienic barbers to face music

DM drive aims to raise bar on public health

12 Dec 2009, The Gulf Today

The next time you go to the barbers in Dubai, do not be too surprised if you are asked, "Have you brought your kit along?"
This is because, as part of Dubai Municipality's (DM) drive to ensure a high standard of hygiene at the emirate's barbershops, customers have been given the choice of bringing along their own implements to barbershops or salons - to be doubly sure.
Creating awareness
The civic body will educate the emirate's residents on all the safety aspects involved in the usage of such implements and the overall responsibility for adopting healthy practices, says a senior member of the municipality.
A DM-launched health awareness campaign titled "Together elevating standards of health and safety," aims to further boost hygiene practices at beauty salons and hairdressing centres.
According to Redha Salman, Director of the Public Health and Safety Department of DM, it is time to raise the bar on public health and it all begins with awareness.
"Neglect may cause the spread of communicable diseases like Hepatitis-B, Aids and tuberculosis," he pointed out.
Hygiene pledge
He called upon all hairdressing salons in the emirate to commit themselves to the requirements of hygiene in order to provide a healthy environment for their customers, as they are among the most frequented of places by the public across all ages, cultures, health and social levels.
Violators booked
"At least 21 hairdressing salons and barber shops of Dubai were penalised and had fines imposed upon them during special inspections carried out by the civic inspectors during the Eid Al Adha and National Day holidays," he said.
"The law-breakers were punished as inadequate hygienic measures were in place," he added.
"The campaign targets owners and workers of hundreds of barbershops and beauty salons operating in the emirate, who will be given lessons on hygienic practices necessary to maintain public health for customers as well as for themselves," he added.
He said, "All barbers in the emirate will now have to sterilise their hands, wear gloves, and mask their faces before getting to work on a customer."
Salman pointed out that separate hygiene requirements for ladies and gents salons are in place to prevent a range of diseases being transmitted, including skin diseases and other epidemics.
The workers are also being educated on complications arising from injuries due to wrong practices. A specialised training firm's services have been hired to lecture on hygienic and unhygienic practices, sanitation, sterilisation and problems resulting from them.
If customers are not satisfied with the services or find an unhealthy environment and unhygienic practices at barbershops or salons, they should lodge a complaint with the department, calling in toll-free on 800900.
The civic body hopes the campaign will help develop a culture of community awareness on the ways of healthy living.

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