Pic of Obama fist-bumping cleaner goes viral after claims Boris staff abused them

Pic of Obama fist-bumping cleaner goes viral after claims Boris staff abused them
Barack Obama speaks on disinformation and challenges to democracy

A picture of former President Barack Obama fist-bumping a cleaner went viral after claims Downing Street cleaners were abused by Prime Minister Boris Johnson's staff.

On Wednesday (25 May), writer and political commentator Adam Schwarz took to Twitter to share the photo of Obama fist-bumping someone cleaning what appeared to be the hallway of a governmental building.

"You can always judge an office by how the boss and workers treat the cleaners," he wrote in the caption.

People took to the post's comments to applaud the "compassion" Obama was showing versus how they felt Johnson's team had treated cleaners in Downing Street valuable workers.

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"A leader who respects his position with humility & compassion....," one wrote.

"A picture says it all. free?

#ToriesOutNow," another quipped, while a third added: "The world misses him."

Others also shared their experiences of showing humility to cleaning staff or witnessing bosses disregarding them also added to the conversation.

"I can remember my first morning as Principal. I said good morning to a group of the cleaning staff in reception and asked them how they were. They looked at me as if I was from planet Zog. Found out later that the previous incumbent never acknowledged them. Big mistake," a fourth wrote.

Someone else added: "True. I once worked in a place where none of the bosses actually even tried to make small talk with the cleaners and drivers."

In a report from The Independent, security guards and cleaners who happen to work in the government offices are set to protest against Whitehall's "culture of disrespect" towards lower-paid workers outside of Downing Street.

This demonstration is taking place at 5:30pm on Friday. They also noted that many of these workers are from Black, Asian, and minority ethnic backgrounds.

This course of direction comes after the revelations in Sue Gray's Partygate report of numerous instances of "lack of respect" and "unacceptable" treatment of the cleaning and security staff.

"I found that some staff had witnessed or been subjected to behaviours at work which they had felt concerned about but at times felt unable to raise properly…This was unacceptable," she wrote.

On Thursday, Commons leader Mark Spencer told MPs at Business Questions that Johnson "apologised in person" to the cleaning and security staff in No 10 who were treated poorly during partygate.

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