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1 Addressing the Needs of People with Chemical & Electrical Sensitivities and Fragrance-Free Policies in Emergency Preparedness New Jersey Group for Access.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Addressing the Needs of People with Chemical & Electrical Sensitivities and Fragrance-Free Policies in Emergency Preparedness New Jersey Group for Access."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Addressing the Needs of People with Chemical & Electrical Sensitivities and Fragrance-Free Policies in Emergency Preparedness New Jersey Group for Access and Integration Needs in Emergencies and Disasters (GAINED) January 25, 2012 Mary Lamielle, Executive Director National Center for Environmental Health Strategies, Inc Rural Avenue Voorhees, New Jersey (856) ; cell (856) Addressing the Needs of People with Chemical & Electrical Sensitivities and Fragrance-Free Policies in Emergency Preparedness New Jersey Group for Access and Integration Needs in Emergencies and Disasters (GAINED) January 25, 2012 Mary Lamielle, Executive Director National Center for Environmental Health Strategies, Inc Rural Avenue Voorhees, New Jersey (856) ; cell (856)

2 2Overview Unique health problems faced by people with chemical and electrical sensitivities or intolerances Unique health problems faced by people with chemical and electrical sensitivities or intolerances Emergency preparedness and accommodations for people with CS/ES Emergency preparedness and accommodations for people with CS/ES Equipment, devices, and supplies Equipment, devices, and supplies Evacuation and shelter Evacuation and shelter Assisting people with CS/ES in an emergency situation Assisting people with CS/ES in an emergency situation Eliminating or reducing access barriers for people with CS/ES Eliminating or reducing access barriers for people with CS/ES Improving services for people with CS/ES Improving services for people with CS/ES Fragrance-free policies as a first step toward access for people with allergies, asthma, chemical sensitivities, migraines, autism, and others impacted by indoor pollution Fragrance-free policies as a first step toward access for people with allergies, asthma, chemical sensitivities, migraines, autism, and others impacted by indoor pollution

3 3 People with CS react to low level everyday chemical exposures People with CS react to low level everyday chemical exposures Reactions are triggered by various substances and products such as: Reactions are triggered by various substances and products such as: pesticides, perfumes, air fresheners, deodorizers, disinfectants, tobacco smoke, auto and diesel exhaust, remodeling activities, and cleaning and personal care products; pesticides, perfumes, air fresheners, deodorizers, disinfectants, tobacco smoke, auto and diesel exhaust, remodeling activities, and cleaning and personal care products; many individuals also react to foods, medications, and natural substances many individuals also react to foods, medications, and natural substances Individual tolerances may vary Individual tolerances may vary 16% of the population “unusually sensitive” to chemicals 16% of the population “unusually sensitive” to chemicals Up to 6% of the population chronically ill and disabled with CS Up to 6% of the population chronically ill and disabled with CS

4 4 People with ES react to electromagnetic fields (EMFs) from electrical devices and frequencies People with ES react to electromagnetic fields (EMFs) from electrical devices and frequencies Reactions are triggered by: electrical appliances and devices, microwaves, transformers, high tension wires, cell phones, cell towers, Wi-Fi, fluorescent lights, Smart Meters, etc. Reactions are triggered by: electrical appliances and devices, microwaves, transformers, high tension wires, cell phones, cell towers, Wi-Fi, fluorescent lights, Smart Meters, etc. Individual tolerances may vary Individual tolerances may vary 3% of Californians report ES 3% of Californians report ES

5 5 Importance of Healthy Indoor Air Quality 90% of Americans spend 90% of the day indoors (home, school, office, vehicle) Increased indoor air pollution sources Decreased fresh air intake New or reformulated substances and products

6 6 Synthetic organic chemical production United States, Source: U.S. Intern. Trade Commission

7 7 U.S. pesticide production, All types, Source: EPA Market Estimates, 1986, 1988; Pimentel & Andow, 1984; Metcalf, 1980.

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9 9 Resources Chemical Sensitivity: A Report to the New Jersey State Department of Health, December 1989 Chemical Exposures: Low Levels and High Stakes, Nicholas A. Ashford and Claudia S. Miller QUICK ENVIRONMENTAL EXPOSURE AND SENSITIVITY INVENTORY (QEEESI) The Indoor Environmental Quality Project Report, National Institute of Building Sciences,

10 10 In the event of a chemical or environmental incident, people disabled by chemical sensitivities will be sicker faster from much lower levels of exposure, and more debilitated than the average person.

11 11 Emergency Preparedness for People with Chemical and Electrical Sensitivities Not all emergencies or disasters require evacuation. Not all emergencies or disasters require evacuation. The nature of the emergency or disaster and the nature of the disability may define the course of action. The nature of the emergency or disaster and the nature of the disability may define the course of action. For the CS/ES person, the “safest” place may be his or her own home. For the CS/ES person, the “safest” place may be his or her own home. The CS/ES person should also have an emergency or disaster plan in the event of an evacuation. This should include: The CS/ES person should also have an emergency or disaster plan in the event of an evacuation. This should include: Emergency equipment and supplies; Emergency equipment and supplies; Location of the “safest” evacuation site; and Location of the “safest” evacuation site; and Location of an CS/ES-accessible shelter. Location of an CS/ES-accessible shelter.

12 12 Emergency Equipment and Supplies for those Disabled with CS Mask (cotton, charcoal, or surgical) and/or respirator Mask (cotton, charcoal, or surgical) and/or respirator Oxygen mask (ceramic, stainless steel, or well-aired plastic) and tubing (tygon, stainless steel, or well-aired plastic) Oxygen mask (ceramic, stainless steel, or well-aired plastic) and tubing (tygon, stainless steel, or well-aired plastic) Tolerated water in [glass] container; foods that require no cooking Tolerated water in [glass] container; foods that require no cooking Tolerated soap, baking soda, and detergent Tolerated soap, baking soda, and detergent Aluminum foil to seal items not well-tolerated or to use as a barrier Aluminum foil to seal items not well-tolerated or to use as a barrier Towel, sheet, blanket, sleeping bag, or similar equipment that is tolerated by the individual Towel, sheet, blanket, sleeping bag, or similar equipment that is tolerated by the individual Portable air and/or water filter as necessary Portable air and/or water filter as necessary

13 13 First Aid Kit Well-aired tissues, paper towels, and/or washcloth Well-aired tissues, paper towels, and/or washcloth Cotton bandages, gauze, and paper tape Cotton bandages, gauze, and paper tape Hydrogen peroxide, zephiran chloride, or tolerated disinfectant Hydrogen peroxide, zephiran chloride, or tolerated disinfectant Tolerated over-the-counter and prescription medications, supplements, and homeopathic remedies as necessary Tolerated over-the-counter and prescription medications, supplements, and homeopathic remedies as necessary

14 14 If the CS Person Can or Must Be Evacuated The “safest” place for the CS person may be outdoors: The “safest” place for the CS person may be outdoors: the beach; upwind from fires, refineries and traffic; or a remote area Some shelters may be inaccessible for those with CS Some shelters may be inaccessible for those with CS Sealed buildings with inadequate ventilation Sealed buildings with inadequate ventilation New or recently remodeled buildings New or recently remodeled buildings Trailers or tents Trailers or tents Buildings with significant pollutants such as a fire station Buildings with significant pollutants such as a fire station Shelters with chemical toilets Shelters with chemical toilets Shelters with fumes or exhaust from generators, propane, or gas stoves and heaters, or other fuel sources Shelters with fumes or exhaust from generators, propane, or gas stoves and heaters, or other fuel sources Shelters with indoor pollution from tobacco smoke, fragrances and fragranced products, pesticides, new furnishings, toxic cleaning agents, etc. Shelters with indoor pollution from tobacco smoke, fragrances and fragranced products, pesticides, new furnishings, toxic cleaning agents, etc.

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16 16 Recommend that shelters have a “cleaner air room,” an accessible room for people with chemical and electrical sensitivities, free of chemical and electrical pollutants, with a handicap accessible, non- chemical toilet For more information, check out: “The Indoor Air Quality Project Report,” National Institute of Building Sciences,

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18 18 Cleaner Air Room & Paths of Travel No smoking No smoking Fragrance-Free Fragrance-Free Pesticide-Free (Indoors and Outdoors) Pesticide-Free (Indoors and Outdoors) Least Toxic/Risk Cleaning Products Least Toxic/Risk Cleaning Products No Recent Construction or Remodeling Including Carpet Installation No Recent Construction or Remodeling Including Carpet Installation Cell phones turned off Cell phones turned off Ability to turn off or unplug computers and other electrical equipment by occupant or staff Ability to turn off or unplug computers and other electrical equipment by occupant or staff Ability to turn off fluorescent lighting by occupant or staff Ability to turn off fluorescent lighting by occupant or staff Ability to adjust temperature and air flow by occupant or staff, or the availability of operable window(s) Ability to adjust temperature and air flow by occupant or staff, or the availability of operable window(s)

19 19 How to Best Assist People with CS/ES in an Emergency Situation or Evacuation Familiarize yourself with common exposures that trigger reactions. Familiarize yourself with common exposures that trigger reactions. Listen to and respect what the CS/ES person says about what exposures are or will make them sick and help minimize or avoid those exposures. Listen to and respect what the CS/ES person says about what exposures are or will make them sick and help minimize or avoid those exposures. Trust the CS/ES person to know how to meet his or her needs. Trust the CS/ES person to know how to meet his or her needs. Do not use tobacco, scented or potent personal care products, pesticides, or similar items. Do not use tobacco, scented or potent personal care products, pesticides, or similar items.

20 20 How to Best Assist…cont. Provide the CS person with assistance from non-smoking personnel and staff who are free of perfume, cologne, aftershave, and scented personal care products. Provide the CS person with assistance from non-smoking personnel and staff who are free of perfume, cologne, aftershave, and scented personal care products. Ask the CS/ES person if he or she needs to be moved to a less-toxic area or outdoors. Ask the CS/ES person if he or she needs to be moved to a less-toxic area or outdoors. Do not use latex gloves, disinfectants, or similar products without asking. Do not use latex gloves, disinfectants, or similar products without asking.

21 21 How to Best Assist…cont. Be aware that some CS individuals may temporarily lose the ability to think clearly or speak during a reaction. They should have immediate access to cleaner air, masks, or oxygen. Be aware that some CS individuals may temporarily lose the ability to think clearly or speak during a reaction. They should have immediate access to cleaner air, masks, or oxygen. If the CS person is wearing a mask or respirator, speak directly to the individual not to a third party. If the CS person is wearing a mask or respirator, speak directly to the individual not to a third party. If the ES person is unconscious or unable to communicate, move the individual to an area with reduced electromagnetic fields. If the ES person is unconscious or unable to communicate, move the individual to an area with reduced electromagnetic fields. [This can be determined with a handheld Gauss meter.]

22 22 Eliminate Chemical and Electrical Barriers in Emergency Preparedness Prohibit smoking in and within at least 100 feet of a shelter. Prohibit smoking in and within at least 100 feet of a shelter. Prohibit idling of vehicles within 100 feet of a shelter. Prohibit idling of vehicles within 100 feet of a shelter. Require emergency personnel, staff, and shelter to be fragrance-free. Require emergency personnel, staff, and shelter to be fragrance-free. Stock unscented/least toxic cleaning and personal care products. Stock unscented/least toxic cleaning and personal care products. Require least toxic/low impact pest control practices indoors, on the grounds, and in the ambient air in the vicinity of a shelter. Require least toxic/low impact pest control practices indoors, on the grounds, and in the ambient air in the vicinity of a shelter.

23 23 Eliminate Chemical and Electrical Barriers… cont. Shut off fluorescent lights, if possible. Shut off fluorescent lights, if possible. Turn off cell phones and other wireless technology. Turn off cell phones and other wireless technology. Ask if the person needs to be moved or served away from electrical equipment and electromagnetic fields such as computers, microwaves, electrical appliances, transformers, electrical and high tension wires, cell phones, PDA’s, Wi-Fi, Smart Meters, etc. Ask if the person needs to be moved or served away from electrical equipment and electromagnetic fields such as computers, microwaves, electrical appliances, transformers, electrical and high tension wires, cell phones, PDA’s, Wi-Fi, Smart Meters, etc.

24 24 Improving Services for People with Chemical and Electrical Sensitivities Educate yourself and your agency or organization about the needs of people with CS/ES. Educate yourself and your agency or organization about the needs of people with CS/ES. Identify and work with the CS/ES in your community to determine how to best meet their needs. Identify and work with the CS/ES in your community to determine how to best meet their needs. Provide notification to people with CS of any toxic event so that they can take precautions or evacuate as necessary. Provide notification to people with CS of any toxic event so that they can take precautions or evacuate as necessary. Establish a registry as a means to provide advance notification. Establish a registry as a means to provide advance notification.

25 25 Improving Services…cont. Keep the needs of those with CS/ES in mind as emergency preparedness plans are developed. Keep the needs of those with CS/ES in mind as emergency preparedness plans are developed. Work to ensure emergency services and shelters are accessible for people with CS/ES. Work to ensure emergency services and shelters are accessible for people with CS/ES. Be prepared to respond to any emergency affecting the CS even if the balance of the population is not significantly affected. Be prepared to respond to any emergency affecting the CS even if the balance of the population is not significantly affected. Provide for the safe evacuation, if necessary, for those who cannot use public transportation. Provide for the safe evacuation, if necessary, for those who cannot use public transportation. Provide outreach to CS/ES people who are unable to get to or be accommodated in a shelter. Provide outreach to CS/ES people who are unable to get to or be accommodated in a shelter.

26 26 Improving Services…cont. Use least toxic/allergenic cleaning and maintenance products and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices with least toxic/low impact products if necessary. Use least toxic/allergenic cleaning and maintenance products and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices with least toxic/low impact products if necessary. Adopt and promote best practices policies that restrict the use of fragrances and the purchase and use of fragranced and scented products in emergency services. Adopt and promote best practices policies that restrict the use of fragrances and the purchase and use of fragranced and scented products in emergency services. FEMA Blanket purchase agreements (BPAs) for medical supplies require products be latex and fragrance-free (Source: Getting Real I, September 2010) See attached: See attached: FEMA Proposal: Promote Best Practices that Restrict the Use of Fragrances and the Purchase and/or Use of Fragranced and Scented Products, National Center for Environmental Health Strategies, January 11, 2011

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28 28 Fragrances & Fragranced Products Scents and scented products are significant contributors to poor air quality; they generate substantial levels of indoor pollutants: Scents and scented products are significant contributors to poor air quality; they generate substantial levels of indoor pollutants: VOCs (volatile organic compounds) VOCs (volatile organic compounds) Particles Particles Secondary pollutants in the presence of ozone Secondary pollutants in the presence of ozone Scents and scented products make indoor environments as well as emergency services and disaster relief inaccessible for people disabled by chemical sensitivities, asthma, migraines… Scents and scented products make indoor environments as well as emergency services and disaster relief inaccessible for people disabled by chemical sensitivities, asthma, migraines…

29 29 Prevalence of Fragrance Sensitivity in the American Population 30% of the American population reported irritation from scented products on others 30% of the American population reported irritation from scented products on others 19% reported adverse health effects from air fresheners 19% reported adverse health effects from air fresheners 10.9% reported irritation by scented laundry products vented outside 10.9% reported irritation by scented laundry products vented outside Higher percentage of adverse effects reported among those with chemical sensitivities and asthma

30 30 Scents & Scented Products: The Basics 2600 plus natural and synthetic chemicals 2600 plus natural and synthetic chemicals A single fragrance can have several hundred chemicals A single fragrance can have several hundred chemicals Not regulated Not regulated Exempted from labeling requirements; disclosure of ingredients not required; formulations confidential; Trade Secret Exempted from labeling requirements; disclosure of ingredients not required; formulations confidential; Trade Secret FDA: personal care products except soaps FDA: personal care products except soaps CPSC: laundry, cleaning, air fresheners CPSC: laundry, cleaning, air fresheners

31 31 Research on Commonly Used Scented Products 25 commonly used scented products emit an average 17 chemicals each 25 commonly used scented products emit an average 17 chemicals each ¼ of emissions toxic or hazardous under at least one federal law ¼ of emissions toxic or hazardous under at least one federal law More than 1/3 emissions classified as potential carcinogens More than 1/3 emissions classified as potential carcinogens Only one of all the chemicals was listed on label or Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) Only one of all the chemicals was listed on label or Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) Products marketed as “green” or “organic” or “natural” emitted just as many toxic chemicals Products marketed as “green” or “organic” or “natural” emitted just as many toxic chemicals

32 32 Scent-free Policies & Practices Enhance public health Enhance public health Improve disability access Improve disability access Protective and inclusive Protective and inclusive Common sense strategy Common sense strategy Increasingly commonplace in the public and private sector Increasingly commonplace in the public and private sector

33 33 Federal Fragrance-Free Policies CDC Indoor Environmental Quality Policy, June 2009 Fragrance-Free Policy “Scented or fragranced products are prohibited at all times in all interior space owned, rented, or leased by CDC.” (p. 9) “Fragrance is not appropriate for a professional work environment, and the use of some products with fragrance may be detrimental to the health of workers with chemical sensitivities, allergies, asthma, and chronic headaches/migraines.” (p. 9)

34 34 CDC Non-Permissible Products CDC Non-Permissible Products Incense, candles, or reed diffusers Incense, candles, or reed diffusers Fragrance-emitting devices of any kind Fragrance-emitting devices of any kind Wall-mounted devices, similar to fragrance- emitting devices, that operate automatically or by pushing a button to dispense deodorizers or disinfectants Wall-mounted devices, similar to fragrance- emitting devices, that operate automatically or by pushing a button to dispense deodorizers or disinfectants Potpourri Potpourri Plug-in or spray air fresheners Plug-in or spray air fresheners Urinal or toilet blocks Urinal or toilet blocks Other fragranced deodorizer/re-odorizer products Other fragranced deodorizer/re-odorizer products

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36 36 NCEHS Fragrance-Free Proposals: White House Disability Policy Office White House Disability Policy Office GSA GSA FEMA FEMA FEMA proposal additionally includes a fragrance- free policy for personal care products and cleaning and maintenance supplies for emergency management and disaster relief

37 37 U.S. Access Board 1999 Holds training for Board and staff on fragrances 2000 Adopts Fragrance-Free Policy for Board Meetings Creates committee to examine CS/ES 2003;2007 Contracts with National Institute of Building Sciences to study indoor environmental quality (IEQ) and CS/ES 2006 Issues “Indoor Environmental Quality Project Report” Opens permanent meeting space designated fragrance-free: all participants refrain from perfume and cologne; unscented personal care products; scent-free cleaning and maintenance (July 2010)

38 38 Federal Fragrance-Free Policies U. S. Census Bureau, March 2009 Issued fragrance-free policy and implementing language to protect employees and accommodate disabled workers Department of Health and Human Services, October 10, 2010 Restricts application of fragranced products at work; exempts fitness centers and day-care centers List of non-permissible fragranced cleaning and maintenance products identical to CDC Fragrance-Free Policy FEMA Blanket purchase agreements (BPAs) for medical supplies require products to be latex and fragrance-free (Source: Getting Real I, September 2010)

39 39 Federal Fragrance-Free Policies EEOC Notice of Proposed Rulemaking ADA Amendments Act of 2008, September 23, 2009 (A) Example 1: An individual with asthma who is substantially limited in respiratory functions and breathing compared to most people, as indicated by the effects experienced when exposed to substances such as cleaning products, perfumes, and cigarette smoke, is an individual with a disability. (Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 183, p )

40 40 Model Fragrance-Free Policy This is a Fragrance-Free Workplace We Share the Air Please refrain from wearing (using) perfume, cologne, aftershave, or other fragranced, scented, or odorous personal care or laundry products including shampoo, hairspray, hair care product, hand lotion, laundry detergent and dryer sheets for the health and comfort of employees and visitors. Please refrain from wearing (using) perfume, cologne, aftershave, or other fragranced, scented, or odorous personal care or laundry products including shampoo, hairspray, hair care product, hand lotion, laundry detergent and dryer sheets for the health and comfort of employees and visitors. Thank you for your cooperation. Thank you for your cooperation.

41 41 Mary Lamielle, Executive Director National Center for Environmental Health Strategies, Inc Rural Avenue Voorhees, New Jersey (856) ; cell (856)


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