So many accessibility guidelines completely skip the fact that these necessary and super easy to implement accessibility measures make it possible for perhaps 1/3 of the population to use (or use without harm) a public (or other) washroom, and especially help provide access for those who have disabling chemical and or environmental “sensitivities” (a term that trivializes the condition and effects).
Fragranced products not only create accessibility barriers for people with chemical and environmental “sensitivities”, fragrance sensitivity, autism, sensory sensitivities, migraines, asthma, MCAS/MCAD, and others, but fragrance ingredients have been linked to a number of other short and serious long term health effects in the general population.
It has come to our attention that too many places that hang up a scent or fragrance-free sign in the front office, have air effers and scented soaps in the washrooms. That’s not how this is done.
How to Basics:
Accessible washrooms for people with environmental sensitivities
Image is of a public washroom with sinks on the left side, a cleaning cart in the middle, and garbage cans holding open the stall doors on the right. There are purple bars across the image with the following lines of accessibility tips text:
Posted in Accessibility, Air Quality, Disability, Environmental Health, Policy
Tagged allergies, asthma, autism, chemical sensitivity, environmental sensitivities, event planning, fragrance sensitivity, fragrance-free, how to, Human Rights, IAQ, invisible disabilities, MCAD, MCAS, MCS, multiple chemical sensitivities, pesticides, scent free, tips
I ran across a sign that the lung association had created, and while I am glad they are doing something , I found the message and visual required some tweaking.
Of course, the lung association didn’t come up with the term “sensitive”, it’s what is used in human rights laws, but it seems to have created an impression in the public’s mind that chemical and environmental sensitivities are trivial, and not disabling or even life threatening like they can be.
It also needs to be said that signs without enforcement are endangering lives and perpetuating harm, systemic accessibility barriers, discrimination, and forced isolated segregation for those who are disabled by any or repeated exposures.
To download printable posters, see below.
Posted in Accessibility, Air Quality, Environmental Health, Environmental Sensitivities, Human Rights, Images, Policy
Tagged accessibility, allergies, asthma, autism, chemical sensitivity, Fragrance, fragrance-free, fragrance-free policy, health, IAQ, invisible disabilities, MCS, migraines, multiple chemical sensitivities, scent free, signs
Back in 2017, there was an effort by Memes for Inconvenient Disabilities to get people to wear a mask to see what it was like to be a human canary.
Only one person we know of took the challenge, but she did not give permission to share her incredible insights from her experience.
I’ve discovered that Fast Company did their own version of the Mask Challenge and here’s their video: Continue reading
Posted in Air Quality, Chemicals, Disability, Environmental Health, Pollution, Products
Tagged allergies, asthma, chemical sensitivity, environmental sensitivities, Fragrance, hazardous air pollutants, IAQ, invisible disabilities, masks, MCS, multiple chemical sensitivities, pesticides, respirators and masks
This article appears in The Job Accommodation Network’s
ENews: Volume 17, Issue 2, Second Quarter, 2019
JAN provides free, confidential technical assistance about job accommodations and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Can’t Ban Fragrances?
Consider a Fragrance Free Zone
Dig into developing a fragrance free zone
From the desk of Linda Carter Batiste, J.D., Principal Consultant/Legislative Specialist
Employees with fragrance sensitivity often need a fragrance free work environment to avoid triggering symptoms. However, it can be difficult to completely eliminate fragrances in some workplaces. Fragrance sensitivity can be triggered by not only perfumes and colognes, but also in some cases by personal products such as deodorant, shampoo, laundry detergent, and lotion. In workplaces with a lot of employees or in which the public has access, trying to control what products people use and enforcing a total fragrance ban can be virtually impossible. So what else can be done? Continue reading
Posted in Accessibility, Air Quality, Disability, Environmental Health, Fragrance, Human Rights, Policy
Tagged accommodation, allergies, asthma, chemical sensitivity, employment, environmental sensitivities, Fragrance, fragrance sensitivity, fragrance-free, fragrance-free policy, IAQ, invisible disabilities, job accommodation, MCS, work
Aside from making women feel like they need products that are
totally unnecessary and can be all around harmful in general, it’s
TOTALLY NOT COOL
to appropriate disability language
to sell products
that harm people with said disability!
If you are ‘scentsitive’, it means you need to be scent-free!
Posted in Accessibility, Air Quality, Chemicals, Environmental Health, Fragrance, Human Rights, Products
Tagged allergies, asthma, chemical sensitivity, environmental sensitivities, fragrance chemicals, IAQ, invisible disabilities, MCS, multiple chemical sensitivities, personal care, scentsitive, video
Awareness is growing about the harmful effects of synthetic, artificial fragrances. This is with good reason, but now, many people have jumped onto the natural fragrance and essential oil (EO) bandwagons, believing them to be safe alternatives.
Is this a good thing?
Some believe so, after all, what could be wrong with something that’s natural?
It’s time to have a closer look.
Posted in Accessibility, Air Quality, Environmental Health, Fragrance, Health, Human Rights
Tagged allergies, asthma, autism, cancer, chemical sensitivity, environmental sensitivities, essential oils, fragrance-free, hazardous air pollutants, hospitals, IAQ, invisible disabilities, MCS, perfume, scent, VOCs
It seems like the best way to clear up some confusion about being fragrance-free, is to provide a checklist of products and places where fragrances that can make you not be fragrance-free are found, so that you don’t inadvertently bring fragrances with you when going somewhere with a strict fragrance-free policy.
The checklist addresses some common misconceptions about what being fragrance-free really means.
Being fragrance-free is about more than not using perfume or cologne.
It’s also not about skipping deodorant, as some people seem to think.
Posted in Accessibility, Air Quality, Environmental Health, Fragrance, Health Promotion, Human Rights, Policy, Products
Tagged allergies, asthma, autism, cancer, checklist, chemical sensitivity, Chemicals, environmental sensitivities, fragrance-free, hazardous air pollutants, health, IAQ, MCS, MCS/ES, migraines, toxic trespass, VOCs
Did you know?
If you use conventional laundry products, you might not knowingly be feeling the effects now, but you more than likely have some neighbours who do!
Dryer vents are undisclosed, unregulated chemical distribution devices.
When you choose your laundry products,
you choose what your neighbours have to breathe!
Please think about your neighbours and choose non-toxic & fragrance-free products, so that your neighbours do not become ill or disabled
and can enjoy their homes and properties too!
A growing number of people (millions, not handfuls) cannot enjoy walking about their neighbourhoods, sitting or working in their own outdoor spaces, or even open the windows of their homes due to the harmful pollutants released from dryer vents that were designed to emit moisture, not drifting toxic chemicals.
Laundry products should not be disabling people or cause short term adverse health effects like asthma, headaches, migraines, confusion, vomiting, dizziness, etc., or longer term effects like reproductive and neurodevelopmental problems!
EWG has a website where you can check the ratings for the products you use. It’s a great place to start learning which products to avoid, and which are safer options.
Posted in Air Quality, Chemicals, Community, Environmental Health, Housing, Laundry, Pollution, Public Health
Tagged allergies, asthma, cancer, chemical sensitivity, Fragrance, fragrance-free, free and gentle, GAIN, hazardous air pollutants, health, IAQ, invisible disabilities, MCS, MCS/ES, petrochemicals, Tide, toxic trespass, ultra pure, VOCs
When someone says they’re fragrance-free, but
they smell like
essential oils, febreze, scented candles, plug-in air effers, &/or air effing sprays…
When someone says they’re fragrance-free, but
Posted in Accessibility, Air Quality, Environmental Health, Fragrance, Pollution
Tagged allergies, asthma, autism, cancer, chemical sensitivity, environmental sensitivities, essential oils, fragrance-free, hazardous air pollutants, health, IAQ, invisible disabilities, MCS, multiple chemical sensitivities, petrochemicals, scented products, VOCs