A few of us were talking about the steps some of us canaries have to take to be able to go places: masks, respirators, scarves to cover hair, lab coats, long skirts, outdoor only clothes that are removed before entering our safe homes, and clothes that are never worn inside due to picking up so much 2nd and 3rd hand fragrance contamination.
And the removal and bagging for later washing of everything we did wear or have with us, and the showers we have to take as soon as we get home.
Then there’s the lunch kits and other accessories we need to pack, but that’s another blog post or three.
I’ve posted before about using tyvek suits, both to wear in order to protect us from exposures when we go out, or to have others wear to protect us from exposures to their products off-gassing when we need them to enter our space.
This time though, someone mentioned that they wanted to go to an event that lasted long enough that they would need to use the washroom while out, so a one piece tyvek suit wasn’t going to cut it.
Even with advance accommodation requests to have all fragranced soaps and fragrance emitting devices removed and replaced with fragrance-free products, most washrooms will still be fragrance contaminated.
Not only that, but using a onesie in a public washroom, when already struggling from exposures, is really darn difficult.
But what about separates? Surely there must be separates available?
And there are!
With a little creativity, these could almost be stylish (ok, a lot of creativity, are there any designers out there who want to make some stylin and affordable protective over-wear for us that can be re-used at least a few times?)
There are even some pieces that come in canary yellow (if that material is tolerated) which would help us make quite the statement!
One issue that there doesn’t seem to be a solution for at this time, is that these (and other protective hazmat options) are made by chemical companies that also make some of the chemicals that are responsible for disabling us, and more than a few of us will not be able to tolerate wearing these, or they will not be enough to protect us from exposures when we are out or when others are in our homes.
However, for some people, in the absence of policies that would allow us to safely access places while dressed (and breathing) more like other human beings, then these are options that could make going out somewhat easier to manage and also reduce recovery time and labour back at home.
While these are another useful tool, or helpful (if not necessary) assistive devices, what we really need are enforced policies that prevent the use of harmful pollutants in indoor (and outdoor) environments so that we can access the people, places, and services that we all need.
Maybe groups of allies and some canaries who are still able can make use of these outfits to gather with and work with policy makers so that some day soon we will all have the right to exist in a healthy environment instead of others having the right to pollute it?