Toronto schools sniff out scent-free future
The Toronto District School Board is considering making schools fragrance-free, but for now will concentrate on encouraging students and staff to be sensible about using scented products.
Trustees have voted to establish a Fragrance-free Environment Work Group to investigatewhether to ban scentedproducts such as lotions, perfumes and deodorants.
The group will look into the costs and legal implications of making schools scent-free.
Until that happens, trustees agreed at a meeting Wednesday to start a campaign to educate staff and students on the perils of strong scents.
As part of that measure, if a staff member or student complains about a scent, the school must take immediate action to free the space of the "offending chemical-based scent."
Fragrancesare known totrigger allergic reactions among asthmatics, and can cause dizziness, headaches and other negative effects on peoplesensitive to scents.
The motion for a scent-free school system was put forward by trustee Josh Matlow.
The board's human resources committee report notes that the move comes as scent-free personal-care products become more widely available at comparable prices.
The Halifax Regional School Board started a scent-free policy in June 1997, a year after the city launched a "no-scent" public education campaign.
Other school boards have chosen to implement awareness programs. The Upper Canada District School Board did so in September 2005.