Expert Voices: Green Cleaning and a Healthy Workforce

  • November 8, 2010

HSC recently released our new, expanded edition of The Quick & Easy Guide to Green Cleaning in Schools! As we created the guide, we spoke with numerous experts to gain feedback on what really works in schools today. One of the exciting new additions to the guide is an Expert Voices panel spotlighting practical advice from leaders in the field.

Here, Darryl Alexander, Occupational Health & Safety Coordinator for the American Federation of Teachers, explains how green cleaning supports a healthy workforce.

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Darryl Alexander; photo: Center for Health, Environment and Justice

Green cleaning delivers significant health benefits to school employees. A little-known fact is that school employees have high rates of work-related asthma and other respiratory disorders. Many of these conditions are due in part to routine exposure to conventional cleaners.

Green cleaning products and practices are designed to minimize troubling exposures and reduce respiratory problems among the workforce. And school employees can achieve a healthy school environment and control the spread of infections with confidence as they reduce exposure to VOCs. Green cleaning is truly a winning strategy for promoting worker and occupant health.

Previously:

  • Pat Pizzo, Director of School Facilities & Operations at East Meadow School District on Long Island, N.Y., explains how the green cleaning program has gained acceptance within the school community.
  • Dianne Jones, Director of School Plant Operations at Montgomery County Public Schools in Rockville, Md., discusses how to measure the effectiveness of a green cleaning program using scheduled/unscheduled maintenance and tracking complaints. 
  • Jim Chittom of Roman Chemical Corp., who was an advisor to Floyd County Schools, Ga. as they implemented green cleaning, explains challenges related to product performance.
  • Rachel Gutter, Director of the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council in Washington, D.C., explains the role of green cleaning in a healthy, LEED-certified school.
  • Sandi Delack, President of the National Association of School Nurses, discusses how school nurses can play an important role in educating staff on proper hygiene as part of a green cleaning program.

To learn more or order your free copy of The Quick & Easy Guide to Green Cleaning in Schools, visit www.greencleanschools.org.