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- Press Release -
National Center for Environmental Health Strategies, Inc.

Access Board Adopts Fragrance Free Policy;
Strong Recommendations for Future Action
on MCS for FY 2001

Contact: Mary Lamielle, Executive Director
National Center for Environmental Health Strategies, Inc.
1100 Rural Avenue
Voorhees, NJ 08043
(856) 429-5358

VOORHEES, NJ; July 26, 2000 -- On July 26 the U.S. Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board, the "Access Board," voted to adopt a Fragrance-Free Policy for Board Meetings and public meeting places where the board holds meetings. Beginning with the September 2000 board meeting, announcements in the Federal Register* will include the statement that persons attending the board meeting are requested to refrain from wearing perfume, cologne, and other fragrances for the comfort of participants. Hotels used by the Access Board will be asked to accommodate the needs of the chemically sensitive to the extent feasible.

The staff will use a check list when contracting with hotels to ensure that meeting places are as accessible as possible with regard to access issues such as remodeling activities, carpet shampoo, pesticide use and other products and practices. Hotels will be asked to turn off or remove fragrance dispensers. "While this is no guarantee of access, it will go a long way toward enhancing access for those with MCS as well as educating the Access Board, those in the hospitality industry, and the public" according to Mary Lamielle, Executive Director of the National Center for Environmental Health Strategies.

A number of board members also recommended that MCS be added to the project list for FY2001. There was active support for a substantial review of the access requests from the MCS community. According to Board Member Marilyn Golden from the Disability Rights Education Defense Fund (DREDF), the Board has the responsibility to examine "what physical elements in the environment are barriers to people with disabilities." We have the authority to start to move on this issue and see what happens. A proposal will be presented for Board review at the September meeting.

Good News for the MCS Community on the 10th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Cheers!

For more information, please contact Mary Lamielle at NCEHS.


* The specific language that will appear in the Federal Register:

"Persons attending board meetings are requested to refrain from using perfume, cologne, and other fragrances for the comfort of other participants." A sign will also be posted at the meeting.

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The Environmental Health Network (EHN) [of California] is a 501 (c) (3) non profit agency and offers support and information for the chemically injured. HomePage is