Why should I stop wearing fragrance in public?
Because you’re a good person and good people don’t hurt other people.
How do fragrances hurt people?
The chemicals in fragrances can worsen breathing and trigger immune system reactions in many people. Reactions can range from subtle (e.g. fatigue and IBS) to life-threatening, (e.g. anaphylaxis). Fragrance can be as harmful as cigarette smoke, damaging people’s bodies over time.
How many people?
A 2019 research study found 32.2% of adults suffer from fragrance sensitivity and for 9.5% of adults, the severity of health effects can be considered disabling.
What if I just wear a little bit of fragrance?
Your fragrance may smell subtle to you, but not to someone with a fragrance disability. Even light fragrances can harm someone with a fragrance disability.
What does fragrance-free accessibility mean?
Fragrance-free accessibility means creating safe environments for people with a fragrance disability. This includes removing air fresheners, providing fragrance-free soap in the bathrooms, and using fragrance-free cleaning products. It can also include enforcing a fragrance-free policy for employees and/or clients–prohibiting perfume, cologne, scented lotion, and encouraging fragrance-free deodorant and laundry products.
Why should I care about fragrance-free accessibility?
Fragrance limits many people’s ability to work, do errands, get medical care, and attend public events. In addition to the importance of disability inclusion, providing fragrance-free environments can decrease public health and economic costs related to fragrance. Do your part and go fragrance free!
Resources for people with a fragrance disability
- How to ask for a fragrance disability accommodation from a business
- How to tell someone they smell
- I am disabled: How the Americans with Disabilities Act helps me every day
In the news