My article “Invisible Barriers, Invisible Disabilities, Invisible People” is now available to read in the
Special Issue on Ecopsychology and Environmental Sensitivities:
Chemical, Electrical, and Beyond
All the articles in the entire special issue will be available for free until Sept. 5 2017, which is unprecedented access!
Please check them out and share as widely as possible!
Table of Contents:
Posted in Disability, Environmental Health, Environmental Sensitivities, Human Rights, Public Health
Tagged chemical sensitivity, ecopsychology, EHS, environment, fibromyalgia, Gibson, health, invisible disabilities, MCS, MCS/ES, multiple chemical sensitivities, Ontario, petrochemicals, Research, systemic discrimination, toxic chemicals, toxic trespass
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
Posted in Accessibility, Air Quality, Community, Disability, Ecocide, Environmental Health, Environmental Sensitivities, Health Care, Housing, Human Rights, Inspiration, Policy, Pollution
Tagged genocide, hazardous air pollutants, health care access for people with MCS/ES, homeless, Housing, IAQ, invisible disabilities, medically required housing, Mold, petrochemicals, positive thinking, systemic barriers, systemic discrimination, toxic trespass
A few of us in the MCS community have been burning the proverbial candle at both ends and in the middle, trying to generate public awareness and interest to persuade the NS housing authority to reconsider their 3 year battle to evict our good friend Wendy, despite no accessible alternatives being available.
Their unwillingness to understand and accommodate her disability and her medical team’s recommendations… well, it’s something a lot of us have faced and are facing.
Posted in Accessibility, Action, Disability, Environmental Health, Friendship, Housing, Human Rights, Medically Required Housing, Support
Tagged #LetWendyStay, environmental illness, environmental sensitivities, fragrance-free, homelessness, invisible disabilities, MCS, MCS housing, petrochemicals, saving lives, systemic discrimination
Guest Post by V from the USA
This was originally posted to an online support group. V granted her permission to share it here. She has been able to put this part of her life story into words that so many of us find hard to express, and I thank her deeply for sharing her words with you too.
It’s about 1:30 a.m. and this is about the time where I start to feel despair about everything in my life. I just can’t seem to adapt to the isolation and lack of a routine or purpose. Also, I can’t seem to find any pain meds for my chronic pain. I have been in physical pain for so long.
I know this post may seem disjointed which is apropos considering how I feel.
I AM so tired of spinning my wheels…Along with MCS I have so many other medical issues…non terminal that I know of but still…I have asthma and allergies.. I can’t be around dogs or cats, the weather determines my breathing status for the day and my physical mobility.
I can only eat about 10 things and it’s exhausting to try to rotate these foods and I spend excessive time trying to plan. Even planning a rotation I still get itching throat and sometimes a swollen throat with some of the ten things I think I can eat…it’s horrible to start eating and not know how I will feel ..
Posted in Accessibility, Disability, Environmental Health, Fibromyalgia, MCS/ES
Tagged allergies, asthma, barriers, chronic pain, health care access for people with MCS/ES, Human Rights, invisible disabilities, MCS, mobility, petrochemicals, suffering, systemic discrimination
When she needed accommodation, you won’t believe the rigmarole that ensued.
(unless you have MCS/ES)
“They should not have to make significantly more effort to access or obtain service. They should also not have to accept lesser quality or more inconvenience.”
Someone with MCS (who wishes to remain anonymous) was asked about how her efforts to receive appropriate, safe, accommodation were going, so she could see a health care provider. She is one of a growing number of people who become disabled from exposures to toxic chemicals found in many everyday products and materials, especially in fragrances.
This is pretty much how the story goes:
She contacted a health care provider by phone and talked to a receptionist.
She asked her if they had a scent-free policy and was told they didn’t.
Posted in Accessibility, Chemicals, Disability, Environmental Health, Fragrance, Human Rights, Indoor Air Quality, MCS/ES, Policy, Precaution
Tagged allergies, AODA, environmental sensitivities, Fragrance, fragrance-free, fragrance-free policy, health, IAQ, invisible disabilities, multiple chemical sensitivities, petrochemicals, Pollution, rigmarole, smoke-free, systemic barriers, systemic discrimination, toxic chemicals
For people with MCS/ES, assistive devices can allow us to remain functional, independent, and able when we can’t control everything in our environments.
Slide with a few options from New MCS/ES Accommodation Resource
In addition to fragrance, chemical, and wireless free policies, these and other devices can help reduce or eliminate exposures to the pollutants that can otherwise completely disable people with MCS/ES. They can make the difference for people to remain employed when provided early enough, effectively minimizing the effects of MCS/ES.
Posted in Accessibility, Disability, Environmental Health, Health, Human Rights
Tagged air cleaners, air quality, assistive devices, assistive technology, disability tax credits, EHS, environmental sensitivities, Human Rights, insurance, MCS, MCS/ES, multiple chemical sensitivities, oxygen, petrochemicals, sensitive to pollution, systemic discrimination, wireless
Another One Bit the Dust
I survived my second home extraction on the weekend. It was a very infected tooth, an upper rear molar, one that I had somehow managed to retain a year longer than expected. It was actually the first one to get infected last year, but then the other tooth went ballistic, and by the time that extraction site healed, this tooth had calmed down enough to be very useful for eating with.
In hindsight, waiting so long may not have been such a great idea, as in the end, the infection was nasty. Very nasty. It put me into a terrible funk that was really difficult to push my way through, similar to the depression some kinds of mold can cause, and created the same challenges MCS/ES exposures cause, like brain fog, difficulty thinking and doing things, and a real lack of energy. And it stank when pulled. Really stank.
I am so grateful for the home visiting dentist in this area. Not only is he fragrance-free, but he is willing (and able!) to take other precautions to make things safe for me.
Last year, before my first home extraction, we discussed everything that was needed for the procedure, and what was necessary to make it as safe as possible for me.
This year I couldn’t find my old list (despite seeing it a month or 2 ago) and hoped he remembered his. This is what I do remember, and what we did:
Posted in Accessibility, Dental Care, Disability, Environmental Sensitivities, Health, Human Rights, MCS/ES, Multiple Chemical Sensitivities
Tagged appliances, dentist, extraction, fibromyalgia, MCS, MCS dental care, oxygen, puree, systemic barriers, systemic discrimination, VOC free blender, VOCs