In celebration of Global Handwashing Day, October 15, the non-profit Partnership for Food Safety Education (PFSE) is working with health and food safety educators, K-12 educators, and U.S. federal agency liaisons to support people on the critical importance of handwashing to safely preparing food.
A live online event, First We Wash Our Hands, will highlight what is known about the handwashing behaviors of consumers when preparing food, and will provide support and resources for health and food safety educators to engage millions of Americans on proper handwashing for good health. The event will feature USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety Mindy Brashears, CDC Epidemiologist David Berendes, Oregon State University Associate Professor Glenda Hyde and Bruce Monroe Elementary School in Washington DC
“Since research tells us people are not consistent or thorough when it comes to handwashing before eating or preparing food, this special day of focus will engage health educators, teachers, and parents on promoting handwashing practices that will reduce risk of illness from common germs like Salmonella and Campylobacter,” said Shelley Feist, executive director of the Partnership for Food Safety Education (PFSE). “These pathogens cause illness in thousands of children each year.”
PFSE calls on public health agencies, cooperative extension and family and consumer sciences educators to host watch parties and take part in the interactive event which will include handwashing demonstrations, new research on consumer behavior, and the announcement of a new national handwashing campaign from the CDC, Life is Better with Clean Hands. The campaign is designed to motivate adults to make clean hands part of their daily lives and encourages parents and caregivers to be hand hygiene role models for the children in their lives. The campaign’s health promotion materials include radio public service announcements (PSAs), posters, social media graphics, web banners and stickers in English and Spanish.