In my neck of the woods, putting quotation marks around words in the above fashion is often used to indicate a meaning atypical from that commonly associated with the term in question.
Given that, one wonders what meaning is intended by the recommendation that employees “wash hands”?
Is the entire staff in on a big joke in which no one actually washes their hands after using the bathroom, but, should health inspectors stop by, it’s been agreed that everyone will say they wash their hands?
Or is it more complex, in which employees go through some sort of ritual that falls short of effective hand-washing but enables them to assert they’ve made an effort?
Perhaps they use soap but no warm water?
Maybe they just run their hands under cold water?
Could it be that they simply lick their fingers on their way out the bathroom door?
Or, given that the sign says “Employee Must ‘Wash Hands'” perhaps there’s but a single designated employee who has to wash up after being in the bathroom; everyone else is exempt from this onerous regulation.
That’s both the joy and agony of bad grammar: It’s hilariously confusing. Until the dysentery epidemic breaks out, that is.
Given how this photo almost certainly came from a fast-food restaurant bathroom, I don’t know what would be more upsetting: To see this placard before one has eaten, when it can still ruin one’s appetite, or after one has dined, when it’s too late to head for another restaurant.
You know, an establishment that takes hygiene, or at least grammar, more seriously.
(HT: Kids Prefer Cheese)