This washroom isn’t accessible:
neither is this one:
nor are the Ontario highway and other washrooms that have these installed:
Many of us cannot go into a washroom that has an air effer or scented soap.
“In addition to the possibly life threatening immediate and delayed adverse health effects, “our clothes are contaminated and need to be aired out for days before we can even wash them or they contaminate more of our clothes.”
(from a fb comment on the last post)
So what to do?
If we were really gutsy, we could do something like wear skirts and use a jar outside to make the point that we can’t go in…
That thought got Laura and I trying to illustrate it:
Just peeing in the hall, cuz the washroom’s not accessible for disabled people who have MCS/ES
Just peeing in the hall with my gas mask cuz y’all don’t give a ___ about occupational health and safety
Where else am I supposed to go?
Not going into that washroom!
It’s time to get rid of the accessibility barriers!
Washrooms should be clean and fragrance-free!
“inconvenience, morale, and preferences are not valid considerations in assessing whether an accommodation would cause undue hardship”
~ Ontario Human Rights Commission
They were only going to convert one washroom at that mall, but it was a start. We don’t have an update on how it went, because the person who requested this moved to another province before the changes were made.
We do know there are places who have realized the benefits of turning
all of their facilities into fragrance-free facilities!
Like the Wisconsin Division of Transportation:
… “In simplest terms, the public spoke and we were happy to listen,” said Hunt. “There is nothing more important than providing a safe experience for the thousands of daily visitors at WisDOT rest areas.”
Hunt said that the public feedback on scented products was eye-opening as to the magnitude of the problem for some in the traveling public.
“We heard about adverse reactions ranging from uncomfortable to physically sick,” he said. “We took this feedback seriously because our rest areas serve a core safety mission – they are meant to accommodate anyone who needs a break from the road.”
Being a cost-neutral move for the department (where existing inventory was used or returned), the decision to go fragrance-free has been well received by the public.” …
“Fragranced product emissions can affect not only indoor air quality but also human health, workplace productivity, and societal wellbeing. Results from this study reveal that over one third of Americans suffer adverse health effects, such as respiratory difficulties and migraine headaches, from exposure to fragranced products. Of those individuals, half reported that the effects can be disabling.
Many exposure situations are involuntary, such as air fresheners and deodorizers used in public toilets and elsewhere (20.4 % of the population reported health problems from exposure), …, being in a room after it was cleaned with scented products (19.7 % reported health problems), …, along with workplaces, health care facilities, hotels and airplanes with fragranced air environments.
A strong majority (at least twice as many individuals in support than not, in all cases surveyed) prefer that indoor environments and people would not be fragranced.
Fragranced products also restrict access in society.
Of the general population, 17.5 % were unable to use toilets in public places because of air fresheners or deodorizers, 14.1 % were unable to wash their hands with soap in public places because of fragranced soap, and 22.7 % were unable to go someplace because of the presence of a fragranced product.
Importantly, adverse effects resulting from exposure to fragranced products, such as in workplaces and public places, raise concerns about liability. For instance, individuals can suffer acute health effects, such as an asthma attack, if they enter a restroom that uses air fresheners.
If they are unable to access a restroom due to the presence of an air freshener, then that poses a potential violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.”
Air fresheners and indoor air quality:
why air fresheners impair rather than improve air quality
1.4. How do air freshener emissions affect the indoor environment?
Air fresheners can contribute to indoor hazardous air pollutants, both through direct emissions and secondary reaction products (e.g., , , , , , , , . Within buildings and other indoor environments, the use of air fresheners has a strong association with high indoor levels of terpenes, benzene, toluene, ethyl-benzene, m,p-xylene, and total volatile organic compounds (e.g., , , , , , .
These kinds of signs should be everywhere!
It’s good for you! It’s good for me!