RE: Re: Multiple chemical sensitivity
From: Magenta Raine (
Date: Fri, 29 Jul 2005 19:42:59 -0700 (PDT)
I am new to this listserv. I am definitely in the market for hopefully
joining a community of some kind. I am a wheelchair user, and also
sensitive to fragrances. For instance, dryer sheets make my throat get
irritated and have migraines, and even I  have bought laundry  soap that
was supposedly fragrance free and i go to fold my clothes and have to wash
them again. So, it is not always easy to get products that are FF.

I am in Oakland, and soon will have a loan,  It is part of a program that
allows section 8 to be applied to mortgages. I suspect and hope I'll be
ready to buy by november or december! So, any co-ho looking for a new
member can contact me. I am looking for a co-ho because I am tired of the
isolation, and the rapid changeover in my apartment building which makes it
hard to get to know each other.  Here is what I am looking for; wheelchair
accessibility, FF awareness, two bed room home with a yard, or a common
yard where i can grow flowers, and hopefully a garage or place where I can
store my extra scooter, manuel chair, and hopefully a special tricycle,
which I don't have yet, but really want to get. 

About me: I am a writer, graphic artist, a member of the Oakland Mayor's
commission on disability, and sometimes I help edit newsletters for
non-prtofit orgs. I have several cats, and enjoy folk music and creating
art of different types.  

I think it's great that co-ho has become accessibility minded. There are
still too few really accessible apartments and homes. 
my nick name is mag or magenta, my other name is Tamar 

tamarmag [at]
How can we expect new results if we do what we've always done? 
War is outdated for the 21st century!

> [Original Message]
> From: Racheli Gai <racheli [at]>
> To: Cohousing-L <cohousing-l [at]>
> Date: 7/29/2005 8:31:31 AM
> Subject: [C-L]_ Re: Multiple chemical sensitivity
> I'd add to what Sharon says that some things that at some point in time 
> seem like a "cause",
> can become eventually part of life which isn't designated as such.  For 
> example: many communities,
> I suspect, take on themselves the task of building houses which are 
> handicapped -accessible.
> Yes, there are laws in place to enforce some level of this, but by now 
> I think our consciousness
> has evolved to a point that making extra efforts to accommodate 
> wheel-chairs and such doesn't
> seem like a "cause", but has been assimilated into a fairly mainstream 
> outlook of what spaces,
> public and otherwise, should be.  This is regardless of whether the 
> group has a handicapped
> person(s) among its members.  I'm sure that a couple of decades ago 
> this wasn't the case.
> My point is that what gets marked as a "cause" is that which hasn't 
> been assimilated (yet?) into
> enough people's consciousness, and that this is an ever-shifting state 
> of affairs.  Which isn't
> to say that on every issue there is a change, or that a change is 
> always in a predictable
> direction.
> R.
> >
> > On Jul 28, 2005, at 7:16 PM, Becky Weaver wrote:
> >
> >> What level of sensitivity do your community members have (mild - 
> >> moderate - severe)?
> >> [snip] Do most cohousing-friendly people take a fragrance-free policy 
> >> in stride? I'm trying to develop a sense of perspective.
> >
> > I think these two sentences go together -- some communities may have 
> > no members who are fragrance sensitive. Is it important for that 
> > community to be fragrance free?
> >
> > I think it is much better to be "fragrance sensitive." Setting a 
> > policy that the community is fragrance free will make the "fragrance 
> > unaware" feel very paranoid because they it will not be natural for 
> > them.
> >
> > If you have people who are fragrance or chemical sensitive, then as a 
> > community you can determine how far you can go in accommodating them. 
> > We have several people who are very sensitive and some not so 
> > sensitive and some who believe that the chemicals are negatively 
> > affecting all of us but only some are aware of this. We only use 
> > cleaning supplies and markers in the commonhouse that are fragrance 
> > free, environmentally friendly.
> >
> > We don't have a policy about people wearing fragrances but I'm sure 
> > people have modified their behavior voluntarily. On the whole, more 
> > people are aware of this.
> >
> > One of the things that I think separates cohousing from ecovillages, 
> > for example, is that cohousers tend not to form around "issues". While 
> > some people will come to the community with a commitment to various 
> > practices or convictions, in the end, communities do what works for 
> > them. A cohousing community is in the end a good place to live for 
> > those who live there. It isn't a school or political movement formed 
> > to convince the world of anything. The aim is community and its 
> > relationship to other communities, etc. but not specifically to 
> > advocate a particular cause unless that community has decided to take 
> > it on.
> >
> > So my answer would be, how do the people in your community feel about 
> > this?
> >
> > Sharon
> > -----
> > Sharon Villines
> > Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC
> >
> >
> > _________________________________________________________________
> > Cohousing-L mailing list -- Unsubscribe, archives and other info at: 
> >
> >
> >
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