Re: Re: multiple chemical sensitivity, fragrances
From: OCC611ng (normangausscharter.net)
Date: Mon, 1 Aug 2005 19:10:00 -0700 (PDT)
Racheli:

     A friend of mine with MCS lives on the top floor of a 5-story
condominium building.  People below her smoke, burn incense, use Plug-In
Fragrance devices, and the odors move right up to her level.  If they leave
their windows open, the odors invade her private space.  I don't see how
anyone can have odors in their private residence and expect them to remain
in their private residence.  It's the same as sound and light.  If your
neighbor is noisy, you hear it.  If the neighbor insists on having bright
lights shining out her window into your place, she is invading your space.

The closer we live together, the more susceptible we become to what our
neighbors are doing.  To be a considerate neighbor, one should be aware of
any negative influences on your adjacent residents and make adjustments
accordingly.

Norm Gauss


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Racheli Gai" <racheli [at] sonoracohousing.com>
To: "Cohousing-L" <cohousing-l [at] cohousing.org>
Sent: Monday, August 01, 2005 2:09 PM
Subject: Re: [C-L]_ Re: multiple chemical sensitivity, fragrances


> Hi Becky,
> My opinion is that while it would be great if everyone gave up on
> fragranced products, it's quite
> unfeasible to expect it at this point in time especially regarding what
> people do in their own homes.
> In my judgment, this is more of an intrusion into people's personal
> zone that most can tolerate.
> Remember that this also creates a precedent: Once the community tells
> people that they can't
> use any fragrance in their home, what will be next?
> I actually doubt that even in Eco-villages people get told whether they
> can use incense and such
> in their private dwelling...  (If I'm wrong on this, perhaps someone
> can let me know).
>
> I'd like to reiterate that I'm all in favor of communities making
> efforts to accommodate handicapped
> people in common spaces - and MCS is a handicap. (ie: This is an issue
> of accessibility).
> In reality, though, it's not easy to convince people to pay attention
> even on this level.  There are always
> those who don't think the problem is "real", and who see any limitation
> as an imposition.
>
> R.
>
>
>
> On Jul 29, 2005, at 2:18 PM, Becky Weaver wrote:
>
> > Thanks for everybody's input on this!
> >
> > To clarify the situation our group is looking at - we have a potential
> > member who can't breathe in the same room as someone who has used any
> > fragranced laundry products. Other personal care products can also
> > cause problems. This is not an issue of perfume, incense, potpourri,
> > and Lysol - all of which we feel are very reasonable to keep out of
> > common spaces - but of *any* product that is not totally
> > fragrance-free.
> >
> > So, we are discussing whether to ask people to agree to switch to
> > fragrance-free laundry & personal care products when they become
> > members. This would not only affect what we use in the common house,
> > but what everyone uses at home.
> >
> > This person has had *very* difficult time, since she can hardly go
> > anywhere other people go without experiencing breathing problems. She
> > can only attend meetings in her own home or outdoors - our other
> > members' houses make her ill, even the ones whose owners have
> > conscientiously switched to fragrance-free everything. She can
> > tolertate some public spaces for varying amounts of time. It's hard to
> > predict ahead of time if someplace that was OK last time is going to
> > be OK next time.
> >
> > We do not have consensus within our community about how much
> > accommodation we can make. I've gotten feedback from associate members
> > who feel that making rules about laundry soap is too extreme. (Again,
> > this is not laundry washed in the common house - this is anything that
> > anybody wears at a community event.) Other people don't have a problem
> > personally making accommodations, but feel uncomfortable asking other
> > people to do so.
> >
> > I realize that the question "what's reasonable" or even "what's
> > feasible" is completely dependent on the people involved. But it is
> > helpful to me to hear what other groups have done, what's worked for
> > them, and what hasn't.
> >
> > And we haven't even started talking about construction materials yet...
> >
> > Thanks,
> >
> > Becky Weaver
> > Central Austin Cohousing
> >
> >
> > Lynn Nadeau <welcome [at] olympus.net> wrote:
> > I am asthmatically allergic to fragrances. In deference to me and other
> > users of our common house (members and public), we do not allow incense
> > or scented candles, smudge, or other intentionally fragrant objects in
> > the CH. I have personally replaced the Dial-type soap in the bathrooms
> > (for one thing "antibacterial" soaps are bad for the environment in so
> > many ways it's a wonder the FDA hasn't pulled them yet; my recent food
> > handlers' training started with a talk on the evils of antibac soap). I
> > did so because the smell gags me, but also because there are people
> > (including one in the neighboring Eco Village, which sometimes meets at
> > our CH) who could be laid up in bed by walking in on such fragrances.
> > The
> > EcoVillage has an official policy that the common spaces there will not
> > use fragrant products, and be fragrance free.
> >
> > My neighbors have seen me go into a wheezing fit enough times that they
> > get that they just CAN'T in good conscience wear fragrances.
> >
> > At the very least, it would be great if coho common spaces could all be
> > fragrance free, in terms of incense, potpourri, smelly cleaning
> > products,
> > gardenias and stargazer lilies too.
> >
> > I believe that we "canaries in the mine" are a clue that such stuff
> > isn't
> > really good for anybody. As we breathe more and more pollution, over
> > the
> > years, people's allergy threshholds will lower. And it's cumulative.
> >
> > The bad news is that lots of good people still don't get it. I keep
> > running into people who adamantly claim I couldn't be not-breathing
> > because of their all-natural organic, fair-trade, essential oils of
> > sandalwood, patchouilli, and rose.....but I'm allergic to those too.
> >
> > The good news is that this is changing. More and more workshops,
> > schools,
> > and even the Seattle Opera are announcing no-perfume policies. I
> > applaud
> > those who at least take steps to raise this awareness -- thanks!
> >
> >
> > Lynn Nadeau, RoseWind Cohousing
> > Port Townsend Washington (Victorian seaport, music, art, nature)
> > http://www.rosewind.org
> > http://www.ptguide.com
> > http://www.ptforpeace.info (very active peace movement here- see our
> > photo)
> >
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> >
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