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1. This should be carried out in a well-ventilated space, with windows open.

2. Take care to avoid contact between bleach and bare skin. While mixing the solution, it is advisable to wear gloves to protect your skin from bleach splashes. (These gloves should then be changed before beginning to clean the items.)

3. Wash your hands with soap and hot water before beginning. If wearing kitchen gloves which you have previously used, wash your hands with soap while wearing the gloves.

4. Mix 1:9 thin home bleach with cold water, and put it in a spray bottle, squirt bottle, or open topped container. Wipe down the outside of the bleach solution bottle with your bleach solution, leave it for 10 minutes. After ten minutes have passed, the outside of the bottle should be only just dry, or ideally slightly wet to the touch- if it’s not, you must add more bleach to your solution, or use more solution, then try again. Make new bleach solution every 24 hours, as it will degrade rapidly. (WHO Guidelines)

5. Remove any protective gloves you are wearing, wash your hands, and put on (fresh) disposable gloves. If you cannot, you must wash your hands very thoroughly with soap and hot water.

6. When putting on gloves, ensure that you touch only the cuff area with your bare hand, to prevent transmission of virus onto the exterior of the glove. If this is not possible, disinfect the exterior of your gloves before touching the items which you plan to exchange.

7. Wipe down a space to put disinfected items upon once you’ve wiped them down. Leave it for ten minutes.

8. Wipe down the surface of each item you need to disinfect and regularly add more bleach solution to the cloth. Place each item on the disinfected surface.

9. With freshly washed hands, place items in a new unused, or also disinfected, plastic bag until needed. Seal the bag.

Removing some of the virus with soap and water
This is a much less reliable option as compared to bleach solution. Try to get bleach if at all possible.

1. Clean each item or surface of visible dirt, as you normally would. Place items on a surface with no visible dirt or soil on it.

2. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and hot water

3. Thoroughly scrub down a clean surface on which you can leave things you’ve cleaned.

4. Wash your hands again, pick up each item, thoroughly scrub the item on all surfaces, and rinse in clean water.

5. Place it on the surface you scrubbed earlier.

6. With freshly washed hands, place items in a new unused, or also washed, plastic bag until needed.

Holding items before use
* Some groups are making a practice of holding all incoming supplies for a minimum of 72 hours before disinfecting as the virus persists less on surfaces over time. Note, however, that the virus can live on some surface types for longer; disinfection with bleach or soap is still necessary.
* This point was added by other mutual aid groups and is not found in QueerCare’s resources.