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Facilities Operations Custodial Services Department provides effective cleaning services for all academic, administrative and public spaces in assigned buildings at the Modesto Maidique, Biscayne Bay, and Engineering campuses as well as the Wolfsonian Museum. (Custodial services for the Graham Center, Wolfe University Center, Recreation Centers and Student Housing are overseen by Student Affairs. Parking and Transportation oversees parking lots and parking areas within the garages.)

Our mission is to provide a safe and healthy environment by utilizing EPA-approved disinfectants (List-N) that are effective against COVID-19 and following the standards and guidelines developed by:

  • Miami-Dade County protocols
  • Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
  • APPA, an organization of educational facilities professionals
  • ISSA, the leading trade association for the cleaning industry

The information below explains what we are doing to ensure the continued good health of our employees and all those who visit our campuses. It also provides detailed information about the equipment and chemicals we use as well as our processes. Finally, it outlines ways you can protect yourself and others and provides a glossary of terms and links to useful resources.

 


Personal hygiene

The best defense against COVID-19 is to avoid being exposed. By following the CDC guidelines below you are protecting yourself and others:

  • Frequent hand washing / hand sanitizing. All FIU restrooms are supplied with Purell Healthy Soap, a green product that removes over 99 percent of dirt and germs. In addition, over 400 hand sanitizer stations have been installed throughout the buildings and all first floor entrances and first floor elevators. The hand sanitizers are filled with Purell Advanced Hand Sanitizer that kills 99.9 percent of most common germs and contains the CDC recommended alcohol solution of 70 percent.
  • CDC’s five steps for handwashing:
    1. Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
    2. Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
    3. Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
    4. Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
    5. Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
  • Wear proper PPE. To protect our employees and the university community, Facilities Operations provides our custodial team with all the necessary PPE including face coverings, face shields, goggles, gloves, boots, etc. They are also provided with disinfectant wipes and individual hand sanitizers.
  • Physical distancing. When in a shared space, stay 6 feet away from others.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • When not feeling well, stay home.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces (“High Touch”)High touch cleaning refers to the process of disinfecting surfaces that are regularly touched by many different people and disinfecting those surfaces on a routine basis.  

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department, high touch cleaning is accomplished by disinfecting these surfaces on a routine basis using an EPA approved disinfectant spray or an EPA approved disinfectant wipe. Surfaces commonly considered to be high touch areas are mostly located in common and public areas and include surfaces such as door handles, knobs, common work stations, study stations, light switches, counter tops, service desks, water fountains, hand railings, operating buttons, elevator buttons (inside and outside of cab), manual dispensers, manual faucets, trash container lids, telephones in classrooms and public areas, ADA buttons and handle bars, etc.

 


Protecting our custodial team

Protecting our custodial team means we are also protecting the university community.

Our team members are provided:

  • All the necessary PPE including face masks, face shields, goggles, gloves, boots, etc.
  • Disinfectant wipes, individual hand sanitizers, and all timeclocks are paired with hand sanitizing stations
  • Extensive training on safe hygiene methods has been provided to staff. In addition, staff were re-trained on the fundamentals of cleaning to ensure they remain safe and follow best practices to protect everyone from harmful germs and infections. Trainings included:
    • Proper hand washing methods
    • Proper methods for putting on and removing PPE
    • Learning about the chain of infection and how germs are spread
    • Blood borne pathogens, understanding what infections they cause, how they are spread, and the risk of infections
    • Using safe and best work practices on cleaning
    • Using chemicals safely

 


Custodial services

  • Green cleaning

    Facilities Operations Custodial Services provides an integrated Green Cleaning program and is in full compliance with all LEED certification requirements and LEED rating system.

    The green cleaning is accomplished by using Green Seal® certified commercial cleaning chemicals such as our glass cleaner, all-purpose cleaner and neutral floor cleaners, to name a few. Our green cleaning program is further enhanced by using only 100 percent recycled paper products in all restrooms. Most of the equipment we use in the custodial department (such as our HEPA certified vacuum cleaners) has green certifications related to filtration and/or water conservation. This is just a partial reflection of the department's green cleaning program.

    Green cleaning is cleaning using products and procedures that are safe for the environment and do not emit any pollutants when used. Green cleaning is important not only for the environment and our planet, but for the health of the general public. Toxic chemicals have been shown to alter hormones and cause issues such as cancers, neurological disorders, weakening of the immune system, learning disabilities, allergies, infertility and more. By using green products that are free of synthetic fragrances, we can reduce allergies in the workplace, not to mention the potential risks of cancer, neurological disorders and more.

  • Disinfectant/sanitizing chemicals use by custodial services
    • 3M HB Quat Disinfectant Cleaner Concentrate 25A EPA registered and an EPA List N disinfectant for use against SARS-CoV-2. Hospital use disinfectant cleaner for use on hard, nonporous, inanimate surfaces of noncritical items. Rinse free. Kills hepatitis B virus (HBV), HIV, MRSA, VRE, herpes simplex I and II and other pathogens.
    • 3M Bathroom Disinfectant Cleaner Concentrate 4A EPA registered. Hospital use disinfectant cleaner that is effective against a broad spectrum of bacteria. For use on washable hard, nonporous surfaces. Virucidal (including HIV-1, the AIDS Virus), fungicidal, and inhibits the growth of mold and mildew and their odors when used as directed
    • MEDICLEAN Disinfectants and Sanitizers Used in the Advance All Cleaner XP and Advance Reel Cleaner. Mildewcide, bactericide, fungicide, deodorant, and disinfectant.
    • Clorox 360 Disinfectant Cleaner used in the Clorox 360 Electrostatic Sprayer
      • Kills 99.9% of bacteria in 5 seconds
      • 44 organism claims: Kills cold and flu viruses, MRSA and norovirus in 2 minutes or less
      • One-stepdisinfecting
      • Eliminates odors
      • Sanitizes soft surfaces
      • Inhibits the growth of mold and mildew for up to 7 days
    • Clorox Anywhere Hard Surface Sanitizing Spray - used in the Clorox 360 Electrostatic Sprayer
      • Kills 99.9% of bacteria on hard, nonporous surfaces
      • Sanitizes hard, nonporous surfaces in 1 minute
      • Eliminates odors
      • Sanitizes hard, nonporous food contact surfaces in 2 minutes Killsodor-causingbacteria
      • NSF-listed (a public health and safety organization)
  • Other cleaning chemicals
    • 3M Neutral Cleaner Concentrate 3A Green Seal Certified, vinyl/vinyl composition floor cleaner
    • 3M Glass Cleaner & Protector Concentrate 17A Green Seal Certified, glass, mirror cleaner
    • 3M General Purpose Cleaner Concentrate 8A Green Seal Certified, cleans most washable surfaces
  • Custodial services equipment
    • Clorox 360 Electrostatic Sprayer utilizes innovative electrostatic spray technology to allow Clorox disinfecting and sanitizing solutions to reach surfaces outside the line of sight, covering what conventional trigger sprays may miss, including the sides, underside, and backside of surfaces. It works by using an electrode to introduce an attractive charge to the disinfecting or sanitizing product and atomizes the solution, using an air compressor to generate a quiet, but powerful liquid flow. For interior use in any area.
    • Titan Impact 410 High Rider Electric Airless Sprayer – a touchless machine used to disinfect large, detail spaces like classrooms, locker rooms, stairwells, auditoriums, and restrooms.
    • Advance All Cleaner XP a touchless hard surface cleaning machine. The spray hose pressure cleans walls and surfaces, the scrub brush agitates hardened dirt surfaces, and a hand squeegee will clean mirrors. Used in restrooms and locker rooms.
    • Advance Reel Cleaner a touchless hard surface cleaning machine. Used in restrooms and locker rooms.
    • Advance 15D Vacuum {H.E.P.A. filter) dual-motor upright vacuum with the CRI (Carpet & Rug Institute Seal of Approval, which signifies it meets the industry’s newest dirt pickup and filtration standards for vacuum performance. HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) vacuums differ from conventional vacuums in that they contain filters that are capable of trapping extremely small, micron-sized particles.
    • Custodial staff have over 300 items in a combination of tools, equipment, supplies and chemicals available to them to tackle the various task they come across.

 


Areas of service, frequency, and processes

  • Restrooms and locker rooms

    Restrooms and locker rooms are cleaned and disinfected daily with 3M HB Quat Disinfectant Cleaner Concentrate 25A, an EPA registered and an EPA List N disinfectant for use against SARS-CoV-2. Below is the regular routine. During semester breaks, a detail cleaning is performed using the Advance All Cleaner XP or Advance Reel Cleaner.

    • Clean and disinfect and/or enhanced high touch disinfecting:
      • Toilets
      • Urinals
      • Flushers
      • Sinks
      • Counter tops
      • Faucets
      • Partitions
      • Mirrors
      • Dispensers
      • Doors, frames, door handles
      • Trash containers
      • Ceramic Walls
      • ADA stall handle bars
      • Door latches
      • Baby changing tables
    • Refill supplies
      • Toilet paper
      • Paper towels
      • Soap
    • Collect trash
    • Sweep/Mop floor
    • Dust AC Vents
    • Machine scrub floor – performed as needed
  • Classroom, class laboratories, and auditorium

    Classroom, class laboratories, and auditorium cleaning is performed in the evening after scheduled classes. The areas are disinfected using the 3M HB Quat Disinfectant Cleaner Concentrate 25A, an EPA registered and an EPA List N disinfectant for use against SARS-CoV- 2 with either the Titan Impact 410 High Rider Electric Airless Sprayer or the Clorox 360 Electrostatic Sprayer.

    These allow us to disinfect a large area in a more efficient manner and will disinfect the doors, doorknobs and handles, door frames, manual light switches, telephones, tables, chairs

    In addition, the following are performed daily

    • Wipe down writing boards
    • Repositioning of furniture
    • Trash removal
    • Dust mop or sweep floors 

    Other items addressed on a pre-determined frequency or as needed are:

    • Vacuum/Dust mop/Damp mop floors
    • Dust light fixtures (exterior of fixture only)
    • Clean trash receptacles
    • Clean interior windows
    • Spot removal of carpet stains
    • Carpet extraction
    • Remove chewing gum
    • Dust blinds
    • Burnish/Polish floors
    • Strip and wax floors
    • Shampoo fabric furniture
  • Public areas and lobbies

    Public areas and lobbies are considered high touch areas because the surfaces are touched regularly by many different people. These areas are disinfected often using our 3M HB Quat Disinfectant Cleaner Concentrate 25A, an EPA registered and an EPA List N disinfectant for use against SARS-CoV-2 or an EPA approved disinfectant wipe.

    The disinfecting focus points include:

    • doors, door frames, door handles
    • ADA buttons
    • tables and chairs
    • front desk counter and window
    • telephones
    • windowsills
    • water fountains and buttons
    • elevator call buttons (inside and outside of elevator)
    • stair rails, chair rails
    • light switches
    • lobby trash cans

    In addition, the custodian

    • Collects trash and removes recyclable materials
    • Sweep, mop floor, or machine scrub floor
  • Kitchens, breakrooms, and lounges

    For kitchens, breakrooms, and lounges we remove trash twice a day, restock the soap and paper towels as needed, and wipe down doors and door frames.

    On an “as needed” basis we

    • Spot clean surfaces, see below for occupant responsibilities 
    • Clean / disinfect sinks 
    • Spot clean trash receptacles 
    • Dust mop or sweep floors / damp mop 
    • Clean exterior light fixtures 
    • Clean interior windows 
    • Dust blinds 
    • Remove carpet stains 
    • Burnish/polish floor
    • Carpet extraction 
    • Strip and wax floor

    The following items are the occupants’ responsibility

    • Dishes 
    • Coffeemakers 
    • Microwaves requests for custodial services to clean are billable 
    • Refrigerators requests for custodial services to clean are billable
  • Conference rooms

    Conference rooms trash is removed daily and weekly all surfaces are cleaned and disinfected with the 3M HB Quat Disinfectant Cleaner Concentrate 25A, an EPA registered and an EPA List N disinfectant for use against SARS-CoV-2.

    Every two to three weeks or as needed, the rooms are vacuumed and the surfaces are polished. Annually the carpets are shampooed, and the floors are stripped and waxed.

  • Stairs and landings

    Stairs and landings daily service includes the removal of trash and the disinfecting of the stair rails. They are swept and mopped weekly. As-needed, gum is removed, the exterior of a light fixture is cleaned, cobwebs are removed, and interior windows are cleaned.

  • Offices

    Office trash is collected twice a week while the cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces, dusting, and vacuuming are on a two- to three-week cycle.

    On an as-needed basis blinds are dusted, interior windows are cleaned, and spots are removed from carpets.

    Carpet extraction and floor restoration is performed annually.

    On request, fabric furniture will be cleaned for a fee.

    Office occupants clean

    • Computers
    • Keyboards
    • Monitors
    • Media Equipment
    • Books
    • All personal items

     

    Area typeCleaning typeFrequency of cleaning
    Trash removalRoutineTwice weekly
    Clean and disinfect all surfaces *RoutineEvery two or three weeks
    VacuumRoutineEvery two or three weeks
    DustingRoutineEvery two or three weeks
    Clean interior windowsRoutineAs needed
    Spot removal of carpet stainsRoutineAs needed
    Dust blindsSpecialtyAs needed
    Carpet extractionSpecialtyAnnually
    Restore floors ****SpecialtyAnnually
    Shampoo fabric furniture***SpecialtyPer request, subject to a charge

Working together – Panthers Protecting Panthers

Working together our FIU community will rely on each other to do our part to combat against COVID-19....by wearing protective face covering, social distancing, staying home when not feeling well, washing hands frequently, and disinfecting your surfaces.

Hand sanitizers have been installed in public areas throughout the campus for easy access for student, faculty, staff, and visitor use.

Disinfectant wipe stations have been installed in classrooms encouraging students, faculty, and staff to wipe down their tables and chairs.

Faculty and staff assist in their office maintenance by disinfecting their desks, tables, chairs, computers, keyboards, personal items, door hands, in between servicing by custodial services.

Reducing the need to enter offices, faculty and staff are encouraged to deposit their trash and recyclables in public trash containers, in kitchens and breakrooms. Alternately, office staff can place their trash bins immediately outside their offices in the hallway and custodial staff will empty them when they are in the area.

Please help the university ensure that all soap dispensers, hand sanitizing dispensers, and disinfectant wipes dispensers are working properly. Should you notice a defective device or a device not working properly, please report it to the Facilities Call Center (Work Management) at 305-348-4600.

 


Glossary

  • Clean (Clean = Germs are Removed)

    Cleaning removes germs, dirt, and impurities from surfaces and objects. Cleaning works by using detergent based chemicals and water to physically remove germs, dirt and impurities. Cleaning helps reduce the number of germs that can lead to infection; however, it does not necessarily kill any germs.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department cleaning is accomplished by using a variety of supplies and tools with the use of Green Seal® certified commercial grade chemicals such as for example glass cleaner, all-purpose cleaner and neutral floor cleaner. Aside from cleaning surfaces other tasks included under this term are trash removal, floor cleaning, dusting, sweeping, and carpet vacuuming.

  • Sanitize (Sanitize = Germ Count is Lowered)

    Sanitizing lowers the number of germs on surfaces or objects to a safe level, as judged by public health standards or requirements. This process works by either cleaning or disinfecting surfaces or objects to lower the risk of spreading infection.

    Sanitary surfaces can be created either by removing germs (cleaning) or killing germs (disinfecting).There are a few different methods used to achieve a sanitary surface but In the Facilities Custodial Services Department sanitizing is accomplished by applying a commercial grade product labeled as Sanitizer to objects and surfaces upon completion of a cleaning process and allowing it to sit for the appropriate dwell time (contact time) as indicated on the products label or product Technical Data Sheet. A dwell time, or contact time, is the amount of time the manufacturer has determined, through laboratory testing, that the disinfectant should remain wet on a surface. Sanitizing is usually mostly done in food service preparation areas such as for example at the Hospitality management kitchens.

  • Disinfect (Disinfect = Germs are Killed)

    Disinfecting destroys or inhibits germs, bacteria and virus on surfaces or objects. This process does not necessarily clean dirty surfaces or remove germs, but by killing germs, bacteria and virus on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection. Disinfecting a surface means that chemicals are being used to kill germs.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department disinfecting is accomplished by applying a commercial grade product labeled as EPA approved Disinfectant to objects and surfaces upon completion of a cleaning process and allowing it to sit for the appropriate dwell time (contact time) as indicated on the products label or product Technical Data Sheet. A dwell time, or contact time, is the amount of time the manufacturer has determined, through laboratory testing, that the disinfectant should remain wet on a surface. The Facilities Department uses a variety of disinfectants that are not only EPA approved but are listed on the EPA’s “N” list for approved disinfectants for the use against SARS-COV-2 (COVID-19). In addition, the disinfectants we use are effective against many other bacteria and viruses such as Norovirus, Hepatitis, HIV, MRSA, VRE, Herpes Simplex I and II and many other pathogens.   

  • Decontaminate (Decontaminate = Toxic Substances are Removed from both Air and Surfaces)

    Decontamination is the process of decreasing antimicrobial presence in an area or on a surface and refers specifically to a confirmed Hazardous Material (HAZMAT) contamination, where the purpose of decontamination is to make an area safe, by physically removing toxic substances.

    In the Facilities Management Department decontamination for purposes such as mold remediation, asbestos abatement and confirmed covid-19 exposure decontamination are outsourced to qualified, licensed and certified vendors.

  • Green Cleaning (Green Cleaning = cleaning with the use of environmentally safe products)

    Green cleaning is cleaning using products and procedures that are safe for the environment and do not emit any pollutants when used. Green cleaning is important not only for the environment and our planet, but for the health of the general public. Why does this matter? Toxic chemicals have been shown to alter hormones and cause issues such as cancers, neurological disorders, weakening of the immune system, learning disabilities, allergies, infertility and more. By using green products that are free of synthetic fragrances, we can reduce allergies in the workplace, not to mention the potential risks of cancer, neurological disorders and more.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department green cleaning is accomplished by using Green Seal® certified commercial cleaning chemicals such as for example our glass cleaner, all-purpose cleaner and neutral floor cleaners to name a few. Our green cleaning program is further enhanced by using only 100% recycled paper products in all restrooms, solar powered faucets, low-flow water saving urinals, and automatic flush valves. Most of the equipment we use in the custodial department (such as hour HEPA certified vacuum cleaners) have green certifications related to filtration and/or water conservation. The above is just a partial reflection of our green cleaning program. The Facilities Custodial Green Cleaning program is in full compliance with all LEED certification requirements and LEED rating system.

  • Enhanced Cleaning (Enhanced Cleaning = Cleaning Targeted Areas More Frequently)

    Enhanced cleaning means performing a routine cleaning more frequently for a targeted area. This could be because a targeted area suddenly receives additional traffic, is extremely dirty or has an increased exposure to germs, bacteria and viruses. During an outbreak of infection or an unusual increase in the incidence of a particular organism, enhanced routine cleaning is recommended.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department enhanced cleaning is accomplished by increasing the cleaning frequency of the targeted areas. If the purpose of the enhanced cleaning is to aid in an outbreak of infection this enhanced cleaning would include disinfecting the targeted areas upon completion of cleaning as well.

  • Routine Cleaning (Routine Cleaning = Cleaning an area at Specific Intervals)

    Routine cleaning is the practice of cleaning areas on a regular basis with specific intervals. In other words, the same cleaning tasks are performed on a predetermined frequency in a predetermined area.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department routine cleaning is accomplished by creating task frequency charts for all the areas we service. Each area (offices, restrooms, classrooms, labs, public areas, athletic facilities, stairways, elevators, etc.) has its own set of tasks and the frequency in which it must be performed. Each task also has its own set of procedures, tools and chemicals needed to complete the task. Frequency is determined by following industry standards for maintaining specific areas and could occur multiple times per day, daily, every other day, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly etc. based upon recommended standards and available labor force.

  • Deep Cleaning (Deep Cleaning = Special Cleaning Treatment for a Specific Surface)

    Deep cleaning is not a scientific concept and likely means something different to individual businesses or consumers.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department this term is often used to describe a specific or specialty cleaning task that is only performed quarterly, semi-annually or annually and performed by custodial workers that are specifically trained for those tasks. For example, deep cleaning carpet would refer to the process of performing carpet extraction; deep cleaning a floor would refer to the process of stripping and waxing a floor; deep cleaning marble or terrazzo would refer to polishing that surface using a diamond pad; deep cleaning of fabric furniture would refer to using specialized upholstery cleaning equipment, etc.

  • Detail Cleaning (Detail Cleaning = Cleaning all Surfaces in a Specific Area)

    Detail Cleaning refers to the process of cleaning all surfaces in a specific area.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department detail cleaning is often driven by a specific customer request based upon a specific occurrence and is performed on a one-time basis as requested. Example of a detail cleaning would be preparation of an office for a new occupant where we detail clean the furniture inside and out, wipe down all walls, clean the blinds and vacuum and shampoo the carpet. Another example would be to detail cleaning an area for construction dust clean-up after a renovation project.

  • High Touch Cleaning (High Touch Cleaning = Disinfecting Frequently Touched Objects)

    High touch cleaning refers to the process of disinfecting surfaces that are regularly touched by many different people and disinfecting those surfaces on a highly regular basis.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department high touch cleaning is accomplished by disinfecting these surfaces on a regular basis using an EPA approved disinfectant spray or an EPA approved disinfectant wipe. Surfaces commonly considered to be high touch areas are mostly located in common and public areas and include surfaces such as door handles, handles, knobs, common work stations, study stations, light switches, counter tops, service desks, water fountains, hand railings, operating buttons, elevator buttons (inside and outside of cab), manual dispensers, manual faucets, trash container lids, telephones in classrooms and public areas, ADA buttons and handle bars, etc.

  • What is the difference between misting, fogging, spray/wipe and electrostatic disinfecting?

    Misters and fogging systems deliver very small droplets that passively deposit on surfaces based on the direction of spray and the effect of gravity, which may result in uneven coverage. Spray/wipe methods are also time consuming, labor intensive and provide the least consistent coverage. Electrostatic delivers charged droplets that are actively attracted to surfaces, including the back sides and crevices of surfaces regardless of the direction of spray for complete wrap-around disinfection coverage.

    In the Facilities Custodial Services Department electrostatic disinfecting is done with the use of the Clorox Total 360 system: https://www.cloroxpro.com/products/clorox/total-360/.