Caring for Our Childen (CFOC)

Chapter 5: Facilities, Supplies, Equipment, and Environmental Health

5.2 Quality of the Outdoor and Indoor Environment

5.2.9 Prevention and Management of Toxic Substances

5.2.9.14: Shoes in Infant Play Areas


Adults and children should remove or cover shoes before entering a play area used by a specific group of infants. These individuals, as well as the infants playing in that area, may wear shoes, shoe covers, or socks that are used only in the play area for that group of infants.
RATIONALE
When infants play, they touch the surfaces on which they play with their hands, and then put their hands in their mouths. Lead and other toxins in soil around a facility can be a hazard when tracked into a facility on shoes (1).
COMMENTS
Facilities can meet this standard in several ways. The facility can designate contained play surfaces for infant play on which no one walks with shoes. Individuals can wear shoes or slippers that are worn only to walk in the infant play area or they can wear clean cloth or disposable shoe covers over shoes that have been used to walk outside the infant play area.

This standard applies to shoes that have been worn outdoors, in the play areas of other groups of children, and in toilet and diaper changing areas. All of these locations are potential sources of contamination.

TYPE OF FACILITY
Center, Early Head Start, Head Start, Large Family Child Care Home, Small Family Child Care Home
REFERENCES
  1. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 2009. Lead in paint, dust and soil: Basic information. http://www.epa.gov/lead/pubs/
    leadinfo.htm.