Healthy Schools Campaign Introduces Green Cleaning Bill

February 17, 2007

by Mark Bishop, HSC Deputy Director

Healthy Schools Campaign has introduced a bill in the state legislature to require green cleaning in schools (House Bill 895).

Known as the Green Cleaning Schools Act, the legislation “requires the Illinois Green Government Coordinating Council (IGGCC), in consultation with other agencies, to establish and amend on an annual basis guidelines and specifications for environmentally-sensitive cleaning and maintenance products for use in school facilities.” It also establishes that after the implementation of the guidelines, public and non-public schools will establish a green cleaning policy.

Take a look at our website for information about the Green Cleaning Schools Act, including why green cleaning is important and suggestions for what you can do to help promote this bill.

The bill was assigned to the Environmental Health Committee and is scheduled for a hearing Wednesday, Feb. 21. We’ll keep you posted on any developments.

The New York Times this week covered the trends in New York around green cleaning. The story makes the connection between the state’s green clean schools law and parental education:

Felicia Busto Fraim always kept her Flushing, N.Y., home clean with traditional brand-name cleaning products like Windex and Fantastik. But her attitude changed the day her daughters’ school switched to environmentally friendly cleaning products […]

Ms. Busto-Fraim embarked on “a total house makeover” after she saw that there was “no discernable difference” in cleanliness at the Waldorf School of Garden City, a private school on Long Island that her two older daughters, Isabella, 11, and Alessandra, 6, attend.

So not only is New York’s nine-month-old green clean law getting schools to make positive changes, but it is also prompting parents to make changes in their homes. It seems to me that this demonstrates how effective state health policy can be.