Category Archives: Health Care

Petitions! Fragrance-free Health Care in the U.S. & Safe Housing in B.C.

Two new petitions have been brought to my attention. Both of them are on change.org.
Please sign and share if you are able:

 

Make all health care facilities and services “fragrance free.”

https://www.change.org/p/us-department-of-health-and-human-services-make-all-health-care-facilities-and-services-fragrance-free

…”Please ask the secretary of HHS to provide leadership on addressing this issue and require all health care facilities and service providers to be scent free.”…

 

and

 

Stop the Human Rights Violations of Disabled British Columbians.

https://www.change.org/p/dear-bc-provincial-gov-t-and-vancouver-municipal-gov-t-leaders-stop-the-human-rights-violations-of-disabled-british-columbians

…”Health supporting housing is needed for low income British Columbians living with MCS. Currently there is no safe, affordable housing in BC for people with this chronic illness. In fact, the housing that is available is making people with MCS more ill by exposing them to off gassing building materials, strong chemicals used in building maintenance, laundry venting, cigarette smoke, and toxicant containing household and body products used by fellow renters.” …

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CBC News Hi-lights Accessibility Barriers to Housing for People With MCS/ES

Severe sensitivity to household chemicals leaves GTA man
homeless for the holidays

Environmental sensitivities have forced Oliver Zhang to move 70 times in 3 years


I hope that someone can offer or help create a safe place for Oliver Zhang to live.

I also hope that something is done soon to ensure safe, affordable, accessible,  non-toxic, mold-free, housing is available for all  the other people who have  MCS/ES (a condition, not disorder) who need safe and accessible housing.

Since finding a safe place to rest one’s head and body is so challenging, even in the best of current circumstances, Oliver Zhang should not be forced to leave the shelter where he is currently residing if it is physically safe enough for him to be there.  He is in crisis.

Forcing people onto the streets creates preventable trauma and mental health problems in addition to the serious challenges that already exist when trying to survive with MCS/ES in a society full of systemic accessibility barriers.

I know of many people who have had to move numerous (even countless) times  in their quest to find housing that doesn’t hurt and disable them. I hear from too many who are in crisis,  seeking accessible housing. I know people who no longer have the energy to keep looking for a needle in a haystack, because each toxic haystack leaves them more and more incapacitated. I know people with MCS/ES who are sleeping in cars and tents, and I have also known more than a few people who weren’t able to find safe housing and are no longer with us.

This is a preventable crisis.

Oliver Zhang and all the other people who are homeless due to the lack of accessible housing for people with MCS/ES, have been put into this position due to systemic neglect (if not deliberate discrimination) and bad policies, not through any fault of their own.

The City of Toronto has known about the critical need for accessible housing for people with MCS/ES since at least 2007, and most likely long before.

In 2008:

“The City of Toronto has launched a consultation process on the development of the City’s ten-year affordable housing plan, known as Housing Opportunities Toronto (“HOT”); and

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Open Letter to the Ontario Minister of Health and the MOHLTC

Dear Minister of Health, we’re ready for action!

According to official statistics:

250,000 Ontarians had been diagnosed with MCS in 2014
and the discrimination is still systemic in 2018

SUBJECT: Accommodation for People with Disabilities

Honourable Helena Jaczek, Minister of Health (at hjaczek.mpp@liberal.ola.org )


On September 29, 2017,
Ontario  quietly released the report “Time for Leadership: Recognizing and Improving Care”  for those with myalgic encephalomyelitis /chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and environmental sensitivities /multiple chemical sensitivity  (ME/CFS, FM and ES/MCS). This report  was produced by the Task Force on Environmental Health for the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care.

The report found that throughout the Ontario health care system and in society at large, there is:

• a lack of recognition of the seriousness and severity of these conditions
• a profound shortage of knowledgeable care providers
• a dearth of clinical tools to support and guide care
• a discouraging shortage of services and supports for people living with these conditions
• an absence of support for family caregivers

The lack of knowledge and appropriate accessible care has devastating effects on Ontarians struggling with ME/CFS, FM and ES/MCS.

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Corporate Gaslighting and Conflicts of Interest at the Women’s College Hospital

I saw something that shocked me, and I don’t know how anyone involved with this could have thought it was a good idea.

This is what I saw

If you are a Canadian, you will probably understand.

.

It’s pretty much the same thing as this (slightly revised) image:

(pretend it’s done all the way)

What would you think if you saw that?

Shoppers Drug Mart is the antithesis of scent or fragrance free!

 

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Province of Ontario Interim Report on ME/CFS, FM, and MCS/ES

The Province of Ontario’s Ministry of Health and Long Term Care’s long awaited Environmental Health Task Force Interim Report has finally been released!

“We found that, throughout the health care system and in society at large, there is:

•a lack of recognition of the seriousness and severity of these conditions
•a profound shortage of knowledgeable care providers
•a dearth of clinical tools to support and guide care
•a discouraging shortage of services and supports for people living with these conditions
•an absence of support for family caregivers.

The lack of knowledge and appropriate accessible care has devastating effects on Ontarians struggling with ME/CFS, FM and ES/MCS.

For those living with ME/CFS, FM and ES/MCS, the lack of recognition of these serious and debilitating conditions is as harmful as the lack of treatments. …

We urge the Minister to act now to raise awareness of these conditions and address the barriers that keep people with ME/CFS, FM and ES/MCS from getting the care and services they need.”

From the press release:

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Why I LOVE Having Environmental “Sensitivities”

Guest post

In all of this I don’t have a permanent place to stay and paid rent to a landlord who won’t fix anything, my apartment insurance cut me off and won’t help with my possessions, my medicare health insurance is not covering the health aspect and my one doctor wants me to see a doctor out of province which is not covered, and my social assistance did not pay me my disability this month, and family does not understand any of this….At this point I have nothing to lose and everything to gain….I AM MOVING FORWARD!

~ Marie LeBlanc, Manitoba, Canada

brick-walking-8-abcde

Ontario Announces the Task Force on Environmental Health

The Government of the Province of Ontario, specifically the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) finally announced the establishment of a Task Force on Environmental Health.

Let’s hope this new project creates the long overdue and effective changes and access to basic services that are needed by people with environmentally linked, disabling,  chronic health conditions like MCS/ES, unlike the 1985 project which created a  600+ page report with recommendations that were largely ignored (see links below), which allowed these and other problems to fester and increase in severity and magnitude.

Ontario Task Force 2016

The news release about the new task force follows:

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