The International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) has announced that Yankee Stadium in New York is the first sports and entertainment venue in the world to achieve the WELL Health-Safety Rating for Facility Operations and Management.
The rating requirements, which have been fulfilled by the New York Yankees, serve as a blueprint for best operating procedures to help combat Covid-19, while also providing world-class standards for overall health and safety.
By achieving this designation, which has been confirmed by a third-party verifier, Green Business Certification Inc., the club can operate with confidence that they are utilising best practices for players and staff, and that they are appropriately prepared to accommodate the reintroduction of fans when approved to do so by Major League Baseball and local governmental authorities.
Launched in June and created by IWBI, the WELL Health-Safety Rating is informed by guidance developed by among others, the World Health Organization and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The WELL Health-Safety Rating achieved by the Yankees is an evidence-based, third-party verified rating for all new and existing buildings and spaces.
The WELL Health-Safety Rating provides operational policies, maintenance protocols, emergency plans and stakeholder engagement strategies to help organizations prepare and maintain their spaces for re-entry in a post Covid-19 environment.
The Yankees joined more than 100 organizations, encompassing over 500 facilities, who enrolled in the documentation-based program at launch and who have begun implementing its scientific guidance.
Yankee Stadium achieved the WELL Health-Safety Rating by implementing features across five categories:
- Air and water quality management, which includes the assessment of ventilation and fresh air supply through mechanical or natural means, and reviewing our inventory of all filters and ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) equipment.
- Cleaning and sanitisation procedures, including ensuring proper handwashing and surface contact by staff, improving cleaning practices and their frequency, and selecting cleaning products that disinfect without harmful ingredients.
- Emergency preparedness programs, which provide a blueprint for dealing with unforeseen events and providing an actionable plan for re-entry after an emergency event.
- Health service resources, which promote the well-being of employees through screening services, mental health services, seasonal vaccination programs and a smoke-free environment.
- Stakeholder engagement and communications, which include employing proper signage throughout Yankee Stadium and promoting health literacy to employees, partners and patrons, including food service safety verification.
Rick Fedrizzi, IWBI chairman and CEO, said:
The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored to companies in every sector how critically important it is to be prepared for a crisis. The Yankees have demonstrated outstanding leadership by taking immediate and thoughtful action to help support the health and safety of their players, fans and employees. We are proud to celebrate this achievement with the Yankees.