Daily Archives: May 5, 2013

Need Protection?

To Breathe, That Is…

I was looking up masks and found these ads…
I am a bit (but not entirely) speechless…

Find a Mask to Filter Fragrance From Work HVAC Systems

“Companies across the globe are including fragrances in their heating and ventilation systems. It’s part of what emotional branding companies such as DMX call a multi-sensory experience. Retail stores may use scent in combination with audio and visual systems to enhance brand awareness. Smell associations, say DMX, are so strong they can even increase worker productivity. Whatever the reason, these scent systems can make it difficult for employees working in the affected areas who have fragrance sensitivities.”

While it won’t be possible for all workers in controlled scent environments to wear respirators, for those who can, we have a few suggestions:


I do know people who have to wear a mask just to go to work. It’s a horrible way to have to live when toxic chemicals are used everywhere everyday by almost everyone, and so much worse when pumped into the air deliberately. In fact, I don’t think anyone with MCS/ES or respiratory symptoms could work (or visit or shop) in an environment with deliberately pumped in fragrance chemicals, even wearing a mask.

That’s why we have human rights legislation to provide fragrance or scent free policies for working environments (see the sidebar or resources page at the top). These policies actually end up benefitting everyone’s health, not just those of us who are “sensitive”. Soon (but not soon enough) that will change to basic public health legislation, as it has for smoking.

Some multi-unit housing complexes have introduced smoke free rules, but so far there are very few housing options with fragrance free rules. We need them. Wearing a mask all day and night just isn’t feasible or possible, even if we tolerate the (mostly synthetic) materials they are made of, which many of us don’t.

Did you know there are masks for kids? These just make me really sad…

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