Tag Archives: perfume

Diffusing Health Harm on Unsuspecting Shoppers and Outrageously False Product Claims

Here’s yet another example of a systemic issue regarding health harming accessibility barriers, happening in a province (and country) where we have Human Rights laws that recognize people with environmental ‘sensitivities’ as having a disability, and where everyone is encouraged to remove accessibility barriers instead of creating new ones.

Unsuspecting Oshawa Costco Canada shoppers are being subjected to this fragrance assault and/or accessibility barrier between November 26, 2019 and December 8, 2019.

Info which was found buried on Costco Canada’s website in the Special Events page, there may be other locations as well.
How many members see these announcements?

In December, it appears that those who shop at  Costco’s Ste Foy location will also be sprayed, without alternative accommodations made for member shoppers whose lives are harmed by this kind of thing (unless there’s a public outcry before it happens).

Not only is the store air thoroughly polluted by this kind of diffusion (as experienced by someone who reported it to their mother who has environmental sensitivities and is severely allergic to fragranced products) for the 2 week duration of this “special event”, but everything in their store(s), *including food*, will also have absorbed substantial residues of undisclosed (and not food-safe) fragrance substances, that may be difficult if not impossible to remove.

This ‘special event’ can cause significant harm to people with asthma, autism, chemical and environmental sensitivities, fragrance allergies, migraines, and mast cell activation syndrome (to name a few). Even 2nd and 3rd hand residues of this type can cause serious (and life-threatening) health problems and long lasting disabling effects, so a suggestion of having someone else do the shopping is not a reasonable or feasible accommodation.

See below for the product details and the store manager’s and assistant manager’s responses when called.

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Are Natural Fragrances Really Any Better?

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.

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What I Wear in Bad Air :: Melanie

2016 Melanie and Jaiden 1Melanie and Jaiden

When I wear my mask I noticed people couldn’t see me smile at them and would avert their eyes and not smile at me.

I will usually speak and say hello. Most people will nod or say hello back even if they don’t smile or look at my eyes. Some will shrink away like I have Ebola. I’ve felt like a leper when that happens. I just hate that my kids are learning that lesson about humanity so young. I hope it will help instill a more compassionate nature in them as they see how not to be.

I started using fabric stickers on my mask sometimes and noticed that people would smile at them. I felt less invisible even if it was my stickers they smiled at more than me. I have several different ones including penguins, crosses, and holiday relevant ones I wear around Christmas time.

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When Women Don’t Relinquish Fragrance

Guest post by By Heidi Utz

Several years ago, I posed to my women’s group a simple question: Can we ask members not to wear fragrances here? A hush fell over the room, then a silence so vast you could have heard a vial of Obsession drop. The same sweet women I’d grown to respect morphed into a pack of rabid wolves. No perfume?! It was as if I’d proposed giving up coffee, sugar, and styling gel in one fell swoop.

Since then, I have spent much time puzzling over their response. Are we so addicted to our scented products that the very notion of relinquishing them strikes terror in our hearts? Or is it more that the perfume industry has done such a stellar job in marketing its wares? Even in Santa Fe, where a comparatively high level of health-consciousness exists, we’re still susceptible to those redolent magazine ads, featuring the young and glossily naked in their evidently perfume-induced attractiveness.

But what if perfumiers, like chemical producers, were forced to include in their ads the manufacturer’s safety data sheets (i.e., the very interesting ways each spritz affects your liver)? Sound far-fetched?

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Asthma, Fragrance, and Job Accommodation

Fragrances Can Cause or Trigger Work-related Asthma

The Work-Related Asthma Prevention Program (WRAPP) of the California Department of Public Health released new fact sheets on fragrances and work-related asthma.

INHALER

Information available:

2017 Fragrances and Work-Related Asthma: Information for Workers (PDF) – fact sheet

2017 Fragrances and Work-Related Asthma: Information for Employers (PDF) – fact sheet

2015 (editable) Workplace Fragrance-Free Policy (Word) – fact sheet

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But I Don’t Smell Anything!

Guest Post by Leah Spitzer

I have Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) – a “multi-system illnesses as a result of contact with, or proximity to, a variety of airborne agents and other substances. (Environmental Protection Agency).” In other words, I react to fragrances, building products and more. It is not a histamine reaction, but rather, a systemic reaction to the chemicals in fragrance and other products.

As someone with MCS, I’m also known as a “canary” with deference to the Canaries in the Coal Mine. As a canary, I often encounter looks of disbelief when I mention I can smell someone’s laundry detergent, or fragrance. I can smell it on them, their dog, their cat, their clothes, or even the package they are bringing me. I smell it in their home and in their car.

Often times, if it’s just a passing moment, I try to step back, or just tough it out, but sometimes I have to speak out. When I do, the most common response, after the surprised look, are:

“I didn’t put any perfume on this morning”
or
“I don’t smell anything”

I don't smell anything

Why the disparity in perception? There are several reasons that I have observed:

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