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Accommodating Fragrance Sensitivity In The Workplace

by on
in Human Resources

Severe allergies may be considered disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), particularly since the definition of disability has been significantly expanded under the ADA Amendments Act.  Employers have a legal duty to reasonably accommodate affected employees who request accommodation.

 

The city of Detroit found this out the hard way when a city employee with multiple chemical sensitivity sued the city under the ADA for refusing to accommodate her disability.

 

A co-worker who wore heavy perfume and used a plug-in room deodorizer had transferred into the department in close proximity to the employee, causing the employee to become ill.  The employee asked the co-worker to refrain from using these fragrances; the co-worker stopped using the room deodorizer but continued wearing the perfume.  The employee complained to her supervisor, and although the possibility of relocating either the employee's or the co-worker's workstation was discussed, no steps were ever taken to remedy the situation.  The employee took multiple sick days and leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and finally sued the city.

 

To settle the lawsuit, the city adopted a policy for city employees, requesting (though not requiring) that everyone in three city buildings refrain from wearing heavily scented products (e.g., colognes, after-shave lotions, perfumes, deodorants, body/face lotions, hairspray), as well as using heavily scented products (e.g., scented candles, air fresheners, room deodorizers) in the workplace. The employee was also awarded $100,000 as part of the settlement.

 

Rolling Out A Fragrance Policy In Your Workplace

If an employee approaches you with an accommodation request due to their adverse reaction to strong fragrances, immediately start working with them to come up with reasonable solutions.  Consider adopting a fragrance policy like the one the city of Detroit eventually did, advising employees that mild scents may be worn in moderation, but strong or offensive scents that become detrimental to the work unit are not welcome.  You could incorporate it into your existing dress code policy, or create a stand-alone fragrance policy.

 

When announcing the new policy to your workforce, explain the general reason behind the policy, but be sure to respect the disabled employee's privacy and keep their medical information confidential. If other employees complain that their rights are being infringed upon, explain to them that wearing a personal fragrance is not a need or a protected right, while accommodating an employee with a disability is both a legal necessity and the right thing to do.

 

If, after the policy is implemented, an employee comes into work scented too strongly, discreetly pull them aside, gently point out that their fragrance is too strong for the workplace, and ask them to refrain from scenting themselves that way in the future.  If they continue to ignore the fragrance restriction, treat it as an issue of insubordination and discipline them accordingly.

 

Reasonable Accommodation Ideas

In addition to or in lieu of a fragrance policy, here are some alternative accommodation ideas you could adopt:

  • Install an air purification system in the facility.

  • Get a small air purifier for the employee to keep in their workspace.

  • Move the employee's workstation to an area where they'd have less exposure to fragrances.

  • Designate certain areas of the workplace (e.g., meeting areas) as fragrance-free.

  • Reduce the employee's face-to-face contact with co-workers or clients by permitting them to conduct business via e-mail, phone, instant messaging, etc.

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{ 7 comments᰾ read them below or add one }

Wanda December 7, 2012 at 5:00 pm

Well, this is the second time I have lost a job this year. The first time, despite explaining in writing as well as having a severe response to co workers perfume wearing in a tiny room I was “laid off”. The second time, I got fed up and quit because not only did I write on my application my sensitivity to perfumes and air fresheners but my boss knowing full well my condition had a brand new electric air freshener installed a few feet from me that pumps fragrance into the air every time someone moves. To add to the insult, I was informed that 6 more of them would be installed in the one room we were in. I told her I could not work in that kind of environment and I told her she knew and had in writing that I was allergic to fragrances. Her response was that there were smelly men in the room (there were not). Then she happily crowed “look” it’s working as it pumped sickening poison into the air as I walked by. Not willing to put up with that I waited outside for my check. I was not willing to get ill and be embarrassed by the severe reaction I have to perfume. Broke for Christmas but at least I might have a chance to find a job working for people who are decent human beings.

Reply

s September 4, 2012 at 2:32 am

From CIIN (see also below on Cindy Duehring)

http://ciin.org/mcs.html

(having a different view point – ie holistic and studied many other modalities – I don’t agree with some of the “experts” (ama based thinking) but this is a great resource for research and doing what one needs to do to get accommodation ssd so on (I had two paths one for the above and the other for true healing).

As she states near the end “you have to become your own expert”… and I quote another author – (sorry forget who) the Body does not lie.

An Overview of MCS

by Cynthia Wilson

Back when doctors believed their patients and before psychosomatic illness and stress became a catch-all for illnesses doctors couldn’t diagnose, there is evidence to suggest that doctors were diagnosing chemical sensitivities as vapors. Vapors were described as an exhalation of bodily organs held to affect the physical and/or mental condition or as a depressed or hysterical nervous condition. Then in the early 1950′s, Theron Randolph, M.D., recognized that people were getting sick from their environment, hence the original name Environmental Illness.

In the 1960′s, it finally became evident to the government that pollution was causing adverse health affects. Dr. Randolph attended that first conference on outdoor air quality. He was the only one to question the effects of indoor air pollution, and his concerns where ignored and/or ridiculed by the medical profession as well as the government. In 1992, EPA conservatively estimated that poor indoor air quality costs the U.S. $1 billion annually in lost productivity. That same year, the National Academy of Sciences estimated indoor air pollution contributes $15 to $100 billion annually to health care costs.

The energy crisis of the 1970′s exacerbated the problem of chemical sensitivities but did nothing to add to the understanding of the illness itself. To conserve energy, the government encouraged weatherization and energy efficient construction that included reducing the ventilation requirements of bringing outdoor air into new buildings. It is this air reduction together with the increases in volatile chemicals in new, synthetic materials and products since World War II that is being blamed for the ever increasing number of people who are being adversely impacted by chemicals.

Then in 1981, in response to the poisoning of thousands of people by urea formaldehyde foam insulation, the National Research Council commissioned a study called Formaldehyde And Other Aldehydes. The report estimated that 10 to 20% of the population was at risk from low level exposure to aldehydes. Though the report’s major focus was the cancer risk, it did recommend an extensive study be done on chemical sensitivities. Nothing was done.

Unfortunately, the medical/biologic understanding of chemical injuries breaks down because of a lack of knowledge created by a lack of basic research. The lack of research is further hampered by a lack of a case definition for the illness. There are several theories as to how these low level exposures are poisoning people, and research into detoxification enzymes found in veterans suffering from Gulf War Syndrome have provided some clues into how the body’s inability to process toxics may be playing a critical role in the initial sensitization process as well as other long-term health problems.

Chemical sensitivity was once thought to be an immune system dysfunction or related to allergies. The latest research strongly suggests that chemical sensitivity is most probably some combination of central nervous system and blood-brain barrier damage, low-level porphyrin abnormalities, and detoxification enzyme deficiencies. Chemical sensitivity is more often than not characterized by real, verifiable damage to the body, though the implications of these anomalies are poorly understood and need research. MCS is also usually accompanied by other diagnosable types of chemically-induced injuries.

The government has been woefully slow to respond with research money, not only for chemical sensitivities, but to study many of the adverse, non-cancer health affects being associated with toxic chemicals in general. The chemical companies have a vested interest in promoting the belief that chemically induced health problems are more psychiatric in nature than a physical response to their products. It is the Chemical Manufacturer’s Association that stated in its 1991 briefing paper, “The primary impact on society would be the huge cost associated with legitimization of environmental illness.” However, with 15% of the population now suffering from some form of chemical intolerance, we may be fast approaching the time when the government will not be able to support the cost of those suffering the health effects caused by poorly regulated consumer products.

Two other factors help complicate the process of unraveling chemical sensitivity. They are masking (adaptation) and spreading (cross sensitization). A very simplistic explanation of the very complicated process of masking is that the body forms an addiction to a chemical so that if a person doesn’t get a regular dose of the chemical, the body will go into withdrawal much like that associated with drug or alcohol addiction. While overt symptoms are being controlled by the masking, internal damage continues unchecked. Spreading can turn chemical sensitivity into a progressive condition. Once a person is sensitized to one chemical, the sensitivity can spread to include other unrelated compounds. Once that happens, repeat exposures reduce the body’s tolerance level by an as yet unknown mechanism so the body becomes more easily reactive to more and more chemicals at lower and lower levels until it finally reaches the point where the person is sick all the time. If this illness reaches that point, the person can kiss a life of casual convenience good-bye.

While most MCS research has focused on an immune system mechanism, MCS critics have repeatedly pointed out that much of what MCS sufferers claim simply cannot be immune system mediated. Especially controversial has been immediate reactions to chemicals or upon the cessation of an exposure. With the exception of a histamine response and some IgE-mediated responses such as anaphylactic shock, the immune system is not generally capable of reacting as fast as the symptoms appear. This has led some researchers to look at the central nervous system because it can and does have the capacity to respond within the time-frame most patients’ experience. The best hypothesis for these fast responses comes from triggering research into neurogenic inflammation. Reactions such as nausea or vomiting are being neurologically mediated unless the patients also have indigestion.

Neurologic testing is finally proving subtle nervous system dysfunction and damage. While it may be years before the full implications of these tests are understood, at least they are available to objectively show abnormalities. With the use of challenge QEEG evoked potentials, SPECT scans, and PET scans, great strides are being made in documenting the effects of chemicals on the nervous system. However, the lack of controlled blind studies on the central nervous system effects of MCS patients is problematic.

The neurological phenomenon known as time-dependent sensitization (TDS), which has been primarily studied in animals for the last 20 years, has an amazing and uncanny similarity to MCS and not only helps to explain how the brain becomes sensitized to low-level chemical exposures in the first place, but the role that stress plays in adverse reactions. It also provides a mechanism for cross sensitization to unrelated chemicals. Until TDS was discovered and applied to MCS, this cross sensitization phenomenon was thought to be impossible by MCS adversaries because no immune system mechanism has even been established for it. Because classical toxicology makes no allowances for cross sensitization either, the impossibility of cross sensitization became a critical element in most theories of why MCS had to be a psychological rather than a physiological disorder.

In 1963, research conducted by Eloise Kailin, M.D., strongly suggested that MCS was a metabolic (enzyme deficiency) disorder. Dr. Kailin’s findings were rejected by both clinical ecologists and MCS adversaries because both sides maintained that to exist at all, MCS had to be immune system mediated. Follow-up research on metabolic problems in MCS sufferers was not conducted for 31 years.

Then in 1994, testing showed that over 90% of MCS sufferers have developed a condition known as Disorders of Porphyrinopathy (an acquired form of the porphyrias). The porphyrias are a group of rare metabolic, enzyme deficiency disorders involving the production of heme (a component of blood) and liver and/or bone marrow damage and have many symptoms in common with MCS. The most significant symptom MCS shares with the porphyrias are chemical intolerance/sensitivity and any estrogen mimicking chemical or drug can trigger an attack.

Disorders of Porphyrinopathy are also showing up in people with chronic fatigue, fibromylagia, amalgam problems, and silicone implants.

Estrogen load may be one reason females (human and animals) are more susceptible than males to metabolic disorders, time-dependent sensitization, and MCS. In addition, a study on Gulf War veterans discovered the plasma butyrylcholinesterase deficiencies may play a significant role in how people get poisoned. A Danish study found that women in their 30s and 40s are at an all time low for the production of this scavenger detoxification enzyme that protects the central nervous system.

Autoimmune disorders are also a major problem for the chemically sensitive. Autoimmunity is not suspected as the triggering mechanism for MCS, but rather it is a consequence of the body’s inability to convert toxins in to harmless by-products fast enough. Toxic exposures can and do trigger autoimmune responses which MCS sufferers must deal with on a regular basis. Being chemically sensitive makes a person more vulnerable to all the possible health consequences associated with chemical exposures — only for MCS sufferers these toxic responses are occurring at extremely low (thought to be safe) levels.

In spite of these medical advances, product warning labels that advise of adverse reactions such as headaches, nausea, blurred vision, etc., mounting animal research that links specific reactions to specific chemicals, and numerous double-blind clinical studies with humans that demonstrate a direct connection between exposure and symptoms; our subjective symptoms still remain highly controversial. Double-blind studies are routinely discounted by critics because there is no way to verify if a patient is nauseous. In science, humans are still not considered reliable indicators. With TDS and enzyme deficiencies, animal models are now available to study MCS, however, lack of funding for basic research is still a major problem and getting what research is available into an established medical journal is even more difficult. For example, the Journal for Occupational Medicine is controlled by doctors employed by Dow Chemical Company, Eastman-Kodak, General Motors, and ITT Corporation.

While things are changing, chemical injuries resulting in chemical sensitivities are still controversial. So given the controversial nature of this illness, the best advice I can offer you is the same advice I got from one of my doctors. He told me I had to become the expert on me. And you need to become the expert on you.

Two books to consider in looking for information on explaining chemical injuries and protecting yourself:

The Human Consequences of the Chemical Problem by Cindy Duehring and Cynthia Wilson, $7.20, TT Publishing, PO Box T, White Sulphur Springs MT 59645

Human Exposure and Human Health by Cynthia Wilson, $55.00 plus shipping, McFarland & Co., PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640 (800) 253-2187

About Cindy Duehring
Researcher, Activist and Pesticide Victim

Cindy Duehring, 36, internationally known researcher, activist, and pesticide victim, died at her home in Epping, ND, on June 29, 1999, from injuries and complications sustained from severe pesticide poisoning in 1985.

Over the years, Cindy received numerous awards for her outstanding contributions to Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) health issues. Cindy’s achievements culminated in her winning the Right Livelihood Award in 1997. (The RLA is considered the alternative Nobel Prize.) At that time, Dr. Gunnar Heuser wrote, “As her physical boundaries and freedom of movement have narrowed the limits of her living, her spirit has taken wings and expanded across the nation and beyond. She has become a resource for interested professionals as well as for the chemically injured and patients with MCS throughout the world.”

Her work continues through the Chemical Injury Information Network (CIIN), which she founded in 1990 with Cynthia Wilson as a way to deal with her chemical poisoning. CIIN is a 501(c)(3), tax-exempt, non-profit, support and advocacy organization run by the chemically injured primarily for the benefit of the chemically injured. It focuses on education, credible research into Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS), and the empowerment of the chemically injured. CIIN publishes the monthly newsletter Our Toxic Times, and its readership has reached over 5,000 members in 35 countries.

Cindy Duehring and Cynthia Wilson, CIIN’s executive director, were commissioned in 1994 by the Chemical Impact Project to write a “white paper” on the health problems posed by chemicals. The 65-page report, The Human Consequences of the Chemical Problem, was presented to Vice-President Al Gore, First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of the National Institutes of Health Donna Shalala, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC had the paper peer reviewed and found it to have “merit,” and a conference was convened to discuss the health issues raised by the paper. The ATSDR called it “powerful and well researched.” The Special Assistant to the President requested extra copies to distribute, and Senator Conrad Burns (R-MT), requested an extra copy to present to the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources.

Reply

s September 4, 2012 at 2:02 am

To all of the above… having been at a nadir (almost dead after a bld fire and years of illegal renovations (floor stripping and no open windows or any other legal standards) (illegal renovations during work in skyscrapers of NYC so on), and having a background in art’s chemistry, biochemistry and WAS obtaining my Masters) I can say this.

I eventually found a lawyer who told me this when smoking was still allowed in the work place (schools et al) (one, a back office of a gigantic bank beginning with a C – eventually put in a smoking room after city officials (and that took 8 months with a city councilwomen as the other agencies did nothing) counted 2 thousand ciggs a minute!!!).

We got smoking banned (one simple letter) with a medical letter stating that said person (me) could not be exposed to said product (in this case cigg smoke) and the following Monday (letter given to mgmt Friday) it was banned! Why – , medical negligence. It over rode all other laws (and if laws did not exist it didn’t matter). Ie the company could be sued for not providing a “safe” work place under medical negligence.

So that is one possibility. One can sue for any amount if the condition causing the problem continues and there is no “reasonable accommodation” as it states under the ADA. After this firm banned smoking – one women continued to smoke in the bathroom telling me to do my business in the plant outside! She was fired that day (or again, this company knew – being a legal firm for wall street, that they could thus be sued).

Knowing other laws can be helpful. Ingress/Egress (entry exit for banning products at an entrance in my case smokers smoking within a certain range of my apt building door ways)

OSHA and NIOSH standards. But in this case of “personal” care products – a strong letter from an MD and medical negligence might be worth looking into. (I was eventually given a room with a roommate who did not use fragrance cologne (he was a male) so on, and I was allowed to bring in (eventually 8 air filters). I collapsed anyway as the building was permeable – if renovation was done below, or smokers, or cleaning late at night (I worked a shift and half late into evenings) with toxic industrial cleaning products – it would come up through the office vents! I was found collapsed and semi conscious at my nadir with blood coming out my skins pores (this took a long time of exposures).

Meaning these products cause great harm. (I – a friend when at nadir – did all holistic approaches – intensive and Gerson as a core – mother in medicine so I great up reading medical books but went to holistic methods early on or I would not be here to write this – great great harm to all cells of the body are done by these toxic products).

Re ADA – (I tried to use that for entry into a food store where smokers would smoke at the entrance – horrific response – as clearly the people reading my complaint were stupid at best. (22 pages of medical information and they said ‘allergy” when it clearly stated life threatening response to small amounts of (medical test) chemicals found in side stream tobacco smoke – one of which is hydrogen cyanide!. (Sorry get fed up with civil “servants” most of whom have little education in the issues they are entitled to make major life decisions for their constituents they represent.)

And being now on SSD the ADA is not all that great – it is only as good as the clerk reading your complaint – and I minored in city government)/

…………

MCS is best understood by realizing that most “flagrance” products today is made from petroleum products (left overs)… and sensitivity is a phenomenon of all cells… so mis understood term… think in terms of toxicity or poisoning…slowly (but equally harmful – a small amount of cyanide in one’s tea over time produces death eventually). Cells become “sensitized” ie reactive due to ever increasing damage to them – so less amount of stress creates more reaction. Think of someone punching your arm – at first , no big deal. Later with damage and much bruising, it takes very little to cause a reaction – in this case – pain!

Many of these synthetic products are extremely toxic – most fragrance products today are not at all plant derived but left over by products from the refinery of oil (and even natural chemicals, plants produce toxins to ward of insects for example – so even “citrus” can be harmful if one has damaged immune system.

It is highly complex – the human physiology, and one reason why many do not understand why these products cause great harm – even to those wearing them (see masking phenomenon and spreading phenomenon).

An easy way to understand this is thus: most know of smokers who when they quite become “sensitive” to other’s smoke where as before (while they smoked) they did not. They were still causing harm to themselves and others (even worse actually) but their immune system being damaged could no longer react ie respond to the damage. (this is all highly simplified).

When they quite – their immune system (in all it’s aspects which is great and varied) starts to heal and “react” saying – get away from this product it is harming you. Regular doctors might give you an “allergy” shot series – masking once again the harm… the chemicals still do damage to many aspects of the body.

So many people who seemingly can wear these products without reactions – (the chemicals do damage to all – it may manifest as cancer, or this or that) are actually in a further stage of damage… just masked and the spreading issue means other pathways of the body are trying to compensate. Damage still is done.

Some resources:

Dr. Grace Ziem (22 page medical write up with science and test provided)

(she has a research arm – Albert Donnelly ??? long ago so boxes of research tossed).

See Dr. Max Gerson (long dead but a true Genius)

CIIN Chemically injured information network.

Dr. Majid Ali (my doc in NYC who allowed me to do my approach and brilliant researcher. Went holistic but highly professional MD.)

Dr. Sherry Rogers

Many more – think chemical injury rather then “sensitivity”.

Poisons in fabric softener, perfumes, second hadn cigg smoke so on for research…(household prducts so on) Dr. Ziem has a great reserach and list of toxins and what harm they cause and alternatives… she can also provide letters and test to back up but as well and outline for your own doctor.

Remember or know this… AMA was formed by Rockefeller to squash natural approaches (he was part of a consortium that owned chemical companies). Think Bayer Aspirin Bayer pesticides to see the alliance of many companies. Meaning your doctor might tell you “it’s all in your mind” – their funding comes in part from said companies (schools, pharma’s so on).

Best to all – it is truly a horrific situation – many including me, end up on indigent SSD and a life outside of society (as well so called Chronic Fatigue, FM – all damaged cells, immune systems)

Reply

Jo August 17, 2012 at 6:30 pm

I was diagnosed within the past few weeks as having allergic reactions to touching substances used in adding fragrances to products. I blister even before I sense the smell, turn bright red and swell up like a blow fish. I discussed with my boss that I needed to take a few hours off for 4 appointments to get tested for allergies and she said it was fine. When I completed the testing, she asked me in front of others what the diagnosis was and I told her that my problem was touching things that contained fragrances.
The next day, the young girl sitting in the next cube decided to “cure” my illness by sensitizing me to fragrance. After seeing that I was at work, she went into the ladies’ room and doused herself heavily with a strong perfume. I went to my boss and said that even if I wasn’t currently having problems, the scent was way too overwhelming. She said that she would speak to the employee and ask her to tone it down.
The employee responded to the request by waiting until I had left for the day and then sprayed all surfaces in my assigned work area with the same scent. Not realizing this, I of course sat down the next day to start work and got perfume all over my clothes, purse and personal items that I brought into work.
I sent an email to my boss and complained that spraying her fragrance in my work area was not acceptable and that I would like to find a solution to accomodate everyone. I said that I did not wish to stop her from using fragranced products, just to stop intentionally spraying them directly on my work surface. My boss replied hours later and told me that HR would be contacting me with forms that I was to take to my physician so that they could verify my condition. The forms include an authorization for release of medical information.
Really? I need to forego my right to keep my medical information private so that this child can play dress-up at work and spray her perfume all over everyone? Do I really need to give up my privacy (I have a much larger, unrelated issue that does not impair my ability to perform work)? I am a cube dwelling computer programmer for goodness sake. This is outrageous! I stink like I’ve been sleeping with a ***** all day, not sitting in an office in a cube glued to a computer monitor.
So my choices are to pay a doctor to fill out this 9 question form and forego my rights to medical privacy, let my skin blister, itch and burn and just suck it up to get through, or find a new situation.
Anybody know who’s hiring computer programmers? Good luck to everyone who suffers with this. You are not alone and there has to be a solution. Thank you.

Reply

willbilly April 10, 2012 at 11:48 am

So, how does one go about finding a doctor practicing environmental medicine? I have been to my MD due to migraines increasing in frequency due to exposure to fragrances. So, he treats me the first visit for a sinus infection. The follow-up visit then prompts a MRI for my brain (normal results) and allergy testing. Allergy tests prove various grasses, dust mites, etc but the Allergy MD states fragrance sensitivity is not an allergy. Both verbally state: Avoid what you know triggers your migraines.

I am working to obtain some type of diagnosis as I have verbally discussed this with our VP and two HR managers (retiring and trainee). The VP has requested a formal diagnosis. Unfortunately, now I will have to follow up with written request for accommodation and not sure how to handle that either. E-mail? If e-mail then CC the VP?

Any suggestions are welcomed as I am beyond frustrated.

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Carol April 7, 2012 at 1:23 pm

Dear MR -

I, too, suffer with MCS and my former employer, a large, well-known international law firm, refused to discuss any accommodation for this disability and fired me instead. Like the Detroit woman who sued her employer (the City of Detroit) and won, I too, sued my employer and won. These are the steps I would take if in your position. No one helped me in my fight to keep my job and have a safe environment, so I am hopeful my advice helps you:

1. If you complain about the situation, put it in writing and try to obtain written responses. Always leave a paper trail.

2. Go to a dr. who practices environmental medicine or at least is aware of MCS and have him write a letter to the principal and perhaps the town’s school administrator in which he describes MCS and requests the town accommodate your disability.

3. Do NOT resign because then you will not be able to receive unemployment benefits.

4. Purchase a charcoal filter face mask from a company called “I Can Breathe.” And wear the facemask to school. I guarantee your principal will not ignore that.

5. Find yourself a good employment law attorney who understands MCS. My former employer, with its huge employment law department, was totally ignorant of MCS and left themselves wide open for a lawsuit.

6. Approach your union, if you are in one, and discuss this matter with the head of the union.

To summarize, keep a detailed log of all your efforts to receive accommodation and do not resign if at all possible. The face mask will help you a great deal. Get a letter from a doctor which will have more persuasive powers than you asking for accommodation alone.

Good luck and let me know what happens.

CF

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Marjorie Rose March 18, 2012 at 11:18 am

I have multiple chemical sensitivities and am currently being repeatedly exposed to perfume/cologne throughout the day at my school where I teach. The exposure is occurring in the hallway outside my room on the second floor of my school and caused by my students. My principal approved my plan to ban all perfume from school and take away some privileges given to students at lunch until perfume use at school stopped. The next day, without my knowledge, he called all my students to the auditorium while I was on lunch duty and told them they needed to stop spraying near me, but could bring perfume to school and could have all privileges at lunch. I have continued to have exposures since then. When I talked with the principal, he told me that he would not take away any privileges from students and did not want to deal with calls from parents who would say their child had a right to bring cologne/perfume to school. He suggested I use my sick days by taking a Friday and Monday off, therefore, giving me a long weekend to recover. I asked him about the other four days I would be exposed. I reminded him that I am covered under the ADA and have had an accomodation in a previous school system. I was very upfront about this when I was hired. This is only my second year in this system, so I do not have tenure. He is willing to have me resign/leave rather than deal with these students. Isn’t he breaking the law?

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