A new program will enable public venues of all sizes to create and maintain an effective cleaning, disinfection and infectious disease prevention plan that could help with the safe resumption of face-to-face events and allay attendee concerns.
Unveiled by the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC), a division of the worldwide cleaning industry association ISSA, GBAC Star establishes requirements to assist facilities with work practices, protocols, procedures and systems to control and minimize the risk associated with virulent agents like the strain of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
“GBAC Star is the gold standard of safe facilities, providing third party validation that ensures facilities implement strict protocols for biorisk situations,” says GBAC executive director, Patricia Olinger. “Accreditation empowers facility owners and managers to assure workers, customers and key stakeholders that they have proven systems in place to deliver clean and healthy environments that are safe for business.”
Ideal for facilities like offices, restaurants, hotels, airports, convention centres and stadiums, the program assesses a facility’s preparedness and provides staff with training for biorisk prevention and containment. It also establishes a framework for communication and awareness best practices.
To achieve GBAC Star certification, facilities must demonstrate compliance with the program’s 20 elements, which range from standard operating procedures and risk assessment strategies to personal protective equipment and emergency preparedness and response measures.
“The way the world views cleaning has changed overnight,” says ISSA executive director, John Barrett. “In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, GBAC Star is exactly what facilities need to confidently reopen and keep staff, customers and communities safe.”
Facilities can apply to the program online and provide all documentation and supporting evidence with their application.
Several leading organizations have already agreed to achieve GBAC Star accreditation in their facilities, including Hyatt Hotels and Resorts. Others that have committed their support are the International Association of Exhibitions and Events and its 12,000 members in 50 countries, International Facility Management Association and its 23,000 members worldwide, and MediaEdge and its portfolio of media products, trade shows and conferences with association partners in Canada.