Category Archives: Environmental Sensitivities

Van Living with MCS/ES

 
 
Marie’s an artist with severe mold sensitivity and MCS/ES, and has created an amazing slide show and photo  exhibits to raise awareness about the plight of people with environmental sensitivities and environmental illnesses, despite living in a dilapitated van, having to travel to the US for our winters because it’s too cold in a van here in Canada.

We really don’t have accessible housing for people with severe MCS/ES. I have several good online friends living in vehicles now because there’s no accessible housing. Marie is one of them, and she needs a reliable new (to her) van really soon, so that she can continue to live and create the beautiful, challenging, and awareness-raising art she lives for.

 
Life in a specialized van is hard enough, but it’s not at all safe in the old one she’s been trying to maintain the last few years. The old van has come to the end of it’s life. She has been harassed by unscrupulous men a number of times when the van broke down, and she deserves better than this from our society.
 
Let’s make sure she receives what she needs. No contribution is too small. Likewise, no donation is too big if you have more than you need.
 
Can you please donate, share, and ask the people you know to donate and share too? The world needs Marie!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

MCS Awareness Video by Maria Rizzo

This excellent video about MCS/ES was made in 2020 by Maria Rizzo, who was behind the Fragrance Free Revolution, but has not aged a second.  It is just as relevant today as it was then.

The only thing that has changed, is that Maria is no longer with us. She lost her life in December 2020 after being subjected to too many exposures when spending time in hospitals with her father.

She wasn’t able to recover from those exposures, the broken heart of losing her father, and of the world that harms us instead of welcomes us.

The tribute her partner wrote when he informed the community of her passing can be found here.

I miss collaborating with Maria, I miss her creative energy, and her ability to do things in clear and concise ways.

She’d still be with us if hospitals and the rest of the world stopped inflicting unnecessary poisons on us all, and instead respected our human rights as well as their own vulnerability to 24/7 exposures to unnecessary hazardous substances.

Her death is a great loss to the global MCS/ES community.

 Rest in power Maria.

Text: Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Choose People...Not Products. Be Fragrance Free Always No Fragrance or Fragranced Products

2021 – Welcome to MCS/ES Action and Accommodation Month

Traditionally May is MCS and MCS/ES Awareness Month.

After decades of awareness raising, it’s time to move on to welcoming action and accommodation, don’t you think?

Are people with MCS/ES, often referred to as Human Canaries, actually welcome in this world?

If you are a person with MCS/ES, please share in the comments if and how you are being accommodated and welcomed (or not) in this world.

If you are a person who doesn’t have MCS/ES, please share in the comments how you are accommodating and welcoming people with MCS/ES into the world.

image description: a faded beach ball mother earth... there's a large faded canary bird (representing human canaries) wearing a full face respirator, on the middle of the globe text reads: Are people with MCS/ES welcome in this world? seriously 'sensitive' to pollution May 2021 MCS/ES Action and Accommodation Month multiple chemical sensitivities MCS/ES environmental sensitivities

Earth Day Human Canary Starter Pack

Human Canaries are what’s left after the signs from wildlife and nature weren’t respected, but we’re not long for this earth either, unless there are some significant changes in people’s daily habits – yes, things everyone can start to do RIGHT NOW!

Let’s start with some hashtags:

#HumanCanaries #EnvironmentalSensitivities #EarthDay #EarthDay2021 #MotherEarth #ChemicalSensitivity #MCS #EHS #IAQ #EnvironmentalHealth #air #water #disabilities #ScentFree #FragranceFree #BeFragranceFree #NonToxic #StopTheKill
Then move on to some science and other research (with apologies for the formatting, I really hate wordpress now):

Continue reading

What Now?

 

A brief account of a seriously “sensitive” to pollution person living in a society where fragranced and toxic products are more important than lives, where disabled lives are disposeable, where it’s now easy to be euthanized (even for for externally imposed and inflicted) suffering, but not to receive support to remove the causes of suffering, causes and conditions that have been made systemic for many people with disabilities.

I’m not a poet and I know it and I wrote it anyway…

What Now? Continue reading

Are Essential Oils Fragrance-Free?

Some people are promoting their essential oils and EO containing products as being #FragranceFree.

A few years ago others were claiming their essential oils were #ScentFree.

It seems we need to have a closer look at this before more people are hurt.
Continue reading

Proclamation, Video, and Other News for May 12th Awareness Day

Toronto’s Mayor John Tory has lent (not given) his support with a Proclamation for  for Awareness Day:

“Proud to proclaim today as Myalgia Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia and Multiple Chemical Sensitivities Awareness Day. It is important that we lend our support and understanding to those living with chronic illness, especially as we deal with #COVID19.

 

(I’m sorry there’s no written transcript for the image)
Continue reading

Homeless Canaries Need Access to Fragrance-Free Showers

 

I saw an announcement on fb from a city agency that was opening up an arena to allow homeless people a place to shower, and they were also providing soap, shampoo, and other necessities.

“People who are homeless or precariously housed in (the city) relied upon bathrooms and showers in public facilities. But, they have closed their doors during the pandemic. There are now free showers and washrooms open daily at (the)  Arena.”

Homelessness is something far too many human canaries are intimately  familiar with, since there are so few accessible, medically safe housing options available when our ‘sensitivities’ become disabling.  Many  human canaries are  precariously housed too.


Graphic image text description:

Everyone welcome.
Toothbrushes, shampoo, soap, and more provided.
Free showers & washrooms
———————————————————————-
ACCESSIBILITY QUESTION:
Is the soap and shampoo fragrance-free so that people with environmental ‘sensitivities’ could also access the space?
MAY is MCS/ES Awareness Month

I was (due to MCS/ES related accessibility barriers) homeless myself for a year, and the need to shower did not go away. I know several homeless canaries now, one who just a few days ago was discussing her attempts to create a shower outside the van she is living in, so I asked the fb page a question about accessibility for homeless canaries.

Here’s what happened:

Continue reading

MCS Awareness Month fb Page

May is MCS Awareness Month, and there’s a new fb page just for this!

If you are on fb, please go “like” the new page, and then click on ‘following’ to choose “see first” so that you can see all the curated material that will get shared over the course of the month, making it easy for you to ‘like’ and share the posts with your fb (and other social media) circles.

As many have noted,  much of the world has had to adopt a ‘lifestyle’ much like we human canaries and other people with disabilities have been living for years, albeit without so many of the additional challenges that disabilities and chronic illnesses bring to surviving daily life.

It would be nice to think that this small taste of what we have been living for a long time will bring about more compassion, empathy, and changes of heart that will inspire people to remove accessibility barriers and welcome us in the world when everyone else is released from isolation.

To that end, we need people to know we exist, as more often than not, there is little to no understanding, or it is trivialized. Sharing info on social media is known to create change, so let’s all be a part of making a better, healthier, and accessible world for everyone.

p.s.

Please leave a comment here if you know of any other groups or people who have organized events or material for MCS (and related) Awareness Month 2020, so that we can all support each other.

New Photography Exhibit in May with a Special Video on May 12th

“Air on the Side of Caution”

From Arts AccessAbility Network Manitoba:

On May 1st, 2020 Marie LeBlanc’s Exhibition, “Air on the Side of Caution” will be available to view in full on AANM’s website (aanm.ca) and we will be posting one image from the show everyday on this event page.

 

Guest Post from Marie LeBlanc:

Continue reading