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Chemical Safety review
July 25, 2006
The federal Office of Chemical Safety is currently conducting a review of national policy on multiple chemical sensitivity.
There is increasing concern within the MCS community that this review has not consulted widely enough with people who actually live with MCS. Consequently the Allergy Sensitivity and Environmental Health Association has started a letter writing campaign to try and get a better deal.
We desperately need this review to result in real improvements in the lives of people with MCS. Unfortunately the review’s main focus to date has been to consult widely with medical professionals but has made very limited attempts to consult directly with people with MCS.
Can we trust these doctors to present a realistic summary of our needs? I truly don’t think so, given the very few doctors around Australia who have a strong commitment to helping people with MCS. Most doctors don’t even recognise that MCS exists. Have you ever tried asking for a fragrance free environment at your doctor’s surgery or local hospital if you have MCS? You’re a very lucky exception if you can get a positive response to such a request.
Can anyone remember the fiasco that gave us the failed national CFS guidelines and what a useless but very expensive document that turned out to be? There was no adequate consultation with people with CFS in that process either.
As people living with CFS/MCS, we cannot afford the medical gatekeepers to continue to oppose the recognition of MCS or, most importantly, the recognition of our disability needs, including disability access to health care services where we won’t be forced to endure the fragrances, cleaning products, paints, new carpets, air fresheners, and other numerous products that make us sick.
There is still time to make a difference to the outcome of this review.
Form letter to the Federal Minister for Health and Ageing
[The form letter was drafted by Dorothy Bowes, President of ASEHA Qld]
Please take the time to send the letter above (or your own letter) to the federal Minister for Health and Ageing, The Hon Tony Abbott MP, calling for more consultation with the MCS community in the national review of MCS. The letter can be sent by snail mail or directly to the Minister’s e-mail address.
The Minister for Health’s contact details are: