Last weekend marked the ‘climax’ of the government’s ‘Clean for the Queen’ initiative. The plan was to mobilize millions to pick up litter in their local community in time for Queen Elizabeth’s 90th birthday on 21st April.
Everybody is in favour of litter free streets. This is a fact. But to be asked to go out and collect rubbish in the name of a state-funded and unelected bureaucrat, (a woman effectively living in a seven hundred and seventy five room council house) is deeply offensive and wrong.
The campaign’s main website, includes the following message:
“What better way could we show our gratitude to Her Majesty than to clean up our country?”
A simple PR failure has created and exposed an unnecessary and inaccurate stereotype of British citizens. We are depicted as lazy, foolish and undignified little children.
If we really want clean streets, why has HM Treasury insisted on cutting council’s street cleaning budgets by 80% since 2011, whilst raising the Royal ‘allowance’ by 38% in the same period?
The idea of organising millions to go out and tidy their local community is good. It’s just a shame it was sold alongside such a shoddy PR failure.