Ontario’s Worker Health and Safety centre has sent out a communication advising employers to substitute safer products for commonly used cleaning and disinfecting products, especially those that are sprayed. These products have been linked to increased risk for developing respiratory disorders, including asthma and COPD.
Janitors have been asked to take on extra cleaning and sanitization tasks during the COVID-19 pandemic, including increased disinfection of surfaces. As the Worker Health and Safety centre outlines, COVID-19 is only rarely spread through surfaces.
SEIU Local 2 calls on employers to follow occupational health and safety laws in taking every reasonable precaution for the protection of workers. This means substituting sprayable cleaning products for safer alternatives or reducing the number of disinfection duties.
The full bulletin can be viewed here: https://www.whsc.on.ca/What-s-new/News-Archive/Cleaning-products-damaging-worker-respiratory-health-study-confirms