As part of the ESRC Festival of Social Science, we launched the Beers, Burgers + Bleach podcast mini-series, containing three episodes: 1) Struggles, 2) Solidarities, and 3) Sanitation (available below). The podcast is based on our research about hygiene, hospitality, and the COVID-19 pandemic, which was funded by the University of Exeter’s Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health (WCCEH). This project was led by Dr Charlotte Jones (PI), Dr Lauren White, Dr Jen Slater and Dr Jill Pluquailec, in close collaboration with hospitality workers, trade unions and local campaigns. Please contact project lead, Charlotte Jones, for more details: email@example.com.
We’re thankful to all our guest speakers, our project advisory group and participants, the podcast producer Kitty Turner, and our funders, the ESRC and the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health.
Episode 1: Struggles
How have hospitality workers’ roles changed throughout the pandemic? Do the new safety regulations come at any cost to the workers, and how can their rights be protected? In this episode, we meet with two hospitality workers to discuss some of the challenges of working in the hospitality sector during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Click here for a full transcript of episode one, ‘Struggles’.
Episode 2: Solidarities
In this episode, we discuss union organisation, community, and activism in the hospitality sector. We meet with Rohan Kon, organiser of the Sheffield Needs a Pay Rise campaign, a local movement of low wage workers; and Rebekah Akingbala, a unionised hospitality worker, who recently left the industry. Together we discuss some of the wins and demands made by workers over the past year; explore some of the difficulties of organising during a public health crisis; and ask what might be done to achieve better conditions for hospitality workers in the future.
Click here for a full transcript of episode two, ‘Solidarities’.
Episode 3: Sanitation
In this final episode, we explore the connections between public health and cleaning labour, and the impact of public toilet closures on hospitality workers, occurring due to council funding cuts over the last two decades and, more recently, the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re joined by hospitality workers to discuss the accessibility and availability of public toilets in the UK, and consider what it means for us to become increasingly reliant on hospitality toilets when out and about. We also take a look at how this project connects back to our earlier Around the Toilet research.
Click here for a full transcript of episode three, ‘Sanitation’.