Hello, world. How’s everyone doing amidst this pandemic? Things sure have turned into an absolute circus lately, and I worry that those of us who already had limited access to many establishments will be forced even farther away as businesses employ the use of stronger chemicals and fragranced cleaners to sanitize surfaces and restrooms.
Dealing with the increase of chemicals and fragrances used indoors is going to turn into a huge problem for many people around the world, and I wouldn’t be surprised if lawsuits become the norm in the coming months and years.
I know this may be a drop in the ocean, but I still wanted to share a letter I formulated a few years ago and have used numerous times. Some of the health information written in the letter below is from Dr. Anne Steinemann and is used here with her permission.
Please feel free to modify the first paragraph to suit your needs, copy and paste the text below for use in emails, letters, and flyers.
I am writing this letter because I recently visited your store with a group of friends. Some of us were made very sick after being exposed to air fresheners in the bathroom, and the overpowering essential oils diffused in the main areas of the store. After speaking to a few employees, we discovered that some staff members are also bothered by the strong smells in the bathroom and shopping areas.
As concerned consumers, we are asking that your company discontinue these practices to accommodate people who suffer disabling reactions to these chemicals.
A large percentage of the population is severely allergic and or chemically sensitive to fragrances in air fresheners and chemical compounds in essential oils.
Did you know that the use of a single air freshener in your establishment and the use of storewide essential oils and fragranced disinfectants can violate the Americans with Disabilities Act? Because people who suffer disabling health effects from air fresheners, fragranced disinfectants, and essential oils cannot access the facility such as a restroom?
People can have seizures, breathing attacks, an anaphylaxis episode, or lose consciousness if exposed to air fresheners, fragranced disinfectants, and essential oils, making it a liability risk for your establishment.
Please use ventilation instead of chemicals and consider removing sources of odors from your restrooms frequently rather than masking them with chemicals.
Please also consider removing all diffused essential oils, scented hand soaps, scented sprays, and wall-mounted air fresheners from this establishment to accommodate those who suffer from disabilities.
We would hope that (establishment name) would not expect a disabled person to park at the end of the parking lot because (establishment name) doesn’t have the required amount of handicapped parking. We would also hope that you would not expect someone in a wheelchair to manage in a small bathroom stall.
In the same way, please do not deny consumers and employees with other disabilities the right to breathe clean air in your stores.
If you would like more information, please feel free to visit the websites below.
Thank you in advance for your attention to this matter. We hope to revisit your store in the future and see the changes.