The Team behind the Clean
How Custodial Staff Keeps Customers and Staff Safe
At 10 p.m., most people are winding down from a long day. For Dale Rappleye, Building Maintenance Supervisor with the City, his workday in custodial maintenance is just beginning, cleaning up everything from the day and giving it a fresh start for the next.
“There is a huge impact on work environment and attitude towards one’s job. A clean building creates a brighter, fresher environment for staff, which creates a better work environment,” Rappleye said.
John Ojeda, Greg Hartnett, Mark Regello, and Eddie Gonzalez are each part of Rappleye’s team. Each night, they go through all City-owned buildings, including city hall, historic city hall, the police department, the corporation yard, the parks and recreation office, the community center, and the train station.
The hard work involves sanitizing, emptying trash, vacuuming, mopping, and cleaning the restrooms and break rooms. Rappleye and his team also conduct light maintenance best performed after-hours, like touching up paint and removing scuffs on walls.
In times of a pandemic, frequent cleaning is especially important to minimize the spread of germs for employees and residents.
“We are responsible for the health and welfare of everyone who enters through our doors. What we do affects both quality of life and aesthetics,” Rappleye said.
Many employees at the City are still operating on hybrid remote schedules to reduce the number of people in the building at any one time. Despite fewer people in the buildings each day, the amount of cleaning has increased to keep employees and visitors to the offices safe.
Sanitization procedures have increased significantly for common touch areas, like lobbies, break rooms, and counters. Special attention is given to the front offices of every building, where visitors conduct their business: counters and door handles are wiped down, hand sanitizer stations are at every entrance, and fabric-covered chairs in lobbies have been swapped for plastic chairs to make sanitizing them each night possible.
“It’s a team effort. I can’t do it by myself, and the whole team deserves recognition,” Rappleye said.