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Dry Cleaning

UK Fashion & Textile Association (UKFT) has assumed responsibility for the dry cleaning membership and associated services from Textile Services Association (TSA).

UKFT is the most inclusive British network for fashion and textiles and by extending our reach into aftercare, we believe we can strengthen the relationship for all parties and maximise opportunities that exist.

UKFT is now managing the dry cleaning arbitration service www.drycleaningadvice.org,  working closely with TSA on any outstanding cases and managing new cases in line with the Fair Compensation Guidelines.

The arbitration service means UKFT acts as a third party between UKFT members and the general public. In most cases, we find an amicable solution which is acceptable to both sides.

UKFT also maintains the Fair Compensation Guidelines, which ensures that all our members pay customers compensation in the same way when they are found to be at fault.

UKFT has taken over the Code of Practice, which has been developed in consultation with the Office of Fair Trading for domestic laundry and dry or wet cleaning services. The Code exists to provide security to the consumer that the service they are going to be of the highest quality. UKFT will be working with its members to raise the profile of the industry to the general public.

UKFT Project Manager Martin Jenkins is responsible for the day-to-day running of the membership and the main point of contact for any issues. Members can contact him by emailing martin.jenkins@ukft.org.

Closer links to retailers and brands

UKFT is committed to both maintaining and growing the dry cleaning membership and associated services it offers to firms.

Early indications suggest the dry cleaning arbitration service in particular may benefit from a closer dialogue between retailers, manufacturers and dry cleaners to ensure that the best options are considered for all concerned.

This is an area UKFT, with its close links to all parts of the fashion supply chain, is looking to develop further in 2019.

Care labelling

UKFT is the UK representative for GINETEX care labelling symbols and also sits on a wide variety of BSI/ISO committees which impact on the whole dry cleaning sector.  This expertise and experience will be useful relating to technical bulletins and information on standards.

Lobbying

UKFT is a voice between government and industry. Following consultations, there is potential for greater lobbying with government on behalf of the dry cleaning industry relating to issues including the use of solvents, plastics and the environment.

As an example, UKFT has recently become involved in the Sustainability in Textile Care Committee, and will be actively engaged in dialogue on the Minimisation of Plastics in Textiles.

Skills and training

UKFT is Sector Skills Body for the Fashion and Textile industry, managing apprenticeship frameworks and ensuring that vocational skills are aligned to the needs of the industry. We have worked on the development of the Textile Care Operative apprenticeship standard (ready for delivery last year) and have experience in developing the new national occupational standards in the nations, which the SVQ in Textile Care Services and the Modern Apprenticeship are now based on. This work meant that there is a synergy and consistency of skills and training provision across the UK.

With the dry cleaning membership now under UKFT’s membership, the association will be actively engaging with the dry and wet cleaning sector for the roll-out of the Textile Care Operative apprenticeship standard with both new and existing training providers in England.

UKFT will be promoting the provision of this training with its provider into 2019 and beyond.

Additional activity

UKFT has started initial consultations with industry on additional activity and will be conducting a wider review of membership in the year ahead. To find out more, please contact martin.jenkins@ukft.org.