Washington DC - June 7th 2016: John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC is a performing arts center located beside the Potomac and adjacent to the Watergate Complex.

Cleaning providers servicing more than 1 billion square feet of commercial building space have committed to following Green Seal’s Guidelines for Safer COVID-19 Cleaning and Disinfection, implementing responsible and effective practices for occupant health and safety at flagship properties nationwide. 

Green Seal-certified commercial cleaning services are implementing the Safer Disinfecting Guidelines at some of the most prestigious properties in the nation, including One Penn Plaza and 1290 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan, Merchandise Mart in Chicago, and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. 

“With too many workplaces turning to excessive disinfection and hazardous chemicals that can compromise people’s health, it has never been more urgent to work with cleaning service providers who are independently verified to meet the highest industry standards for safety and performance,” said Green Seal CEO Doug Gatlin in a press release from the nonprofit. “Green Seal-certified cleaning services are uniquely qualified and committed to following the latest science to disinfect effectively for COVID-19 while protecting indoor air quality and respiratory health.”

Cleaning services clients who are benefiting from implementation of the Safer Disinfecting Guidelines include commercial real estate companies Vornado Realty Trust, CBRE, and JLL; colleges University of Virginia and George Mason University; government agencies the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. General Services Administration, and leading companies such as Facebook and The Ritz Carlton, among others.

Safer Disinfecting Guidelines

Green Seal’s Guidelines for Safer COVID-19 Cleaning and Disinfection reflect the non-profit’s expertise in setting science-based standards for cleaning products, principles, and practices that deliver uncompromising performance while reducing use of hazardous chemicals and promoting safer and healthier indoor air. The Guidelines spell out five best practices for facility, property and housekeeping managers, building on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Environmental Protection Agency.  

Implementing the five best practices can contribute to earning the new LEED Pilot Credit - Safety First: Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Space”, promoting easy adoption by project managers seeking LEED credit. The guidelines also align with the requirements in the features related to cleaning products, practices, and protocols in WELL v2 and the WELL Health Safety Rating for Facilities Management and Operations. 

Health Hazards from Disinfectant Chemicals

Health experts caution that repeated or extended exposures to disinfectant chemicals can lead to significant health effects -- especially among those with asthma, allergies, migraines or suppressed immune systems. Some common disinfectant ingredients have been linked to reproductive toxicity and cancer.

Choosing safer proven-effective products, especially those that do not contain asthmagens or respiratory irritants, is critical for protecting high-risk groups, including  the 1 in 13 Americans with asthma – a group the CDC has identified as high-risk for COVID-19.

Green Seal’s list of recommended COVID-19 disinfectants with safer active ingredients is available here.