Scent-Free Policy

There are some people who work at Horton High School who have sensitivities to various chemical-based or scented products. We ask for everyone’s cooperation in our efforts to accommodate their health concerns.

The use of scented products will not be allowed within the building at any time. In addition, all materials used for cleaning will be scent-free.

Due to the health concerns arising from exposure to scented products, Horton High School has instituted this policy to provide a scent-free environment for all employees and visitors.

What is meant by scent-free?
When we talk about scents, we usually mean the smells or odours from ingredients and
chemicals in cosmetics (perfume, make-up, shampoo, deodorant, etc.) or from other
products such as air fresheners, cleaners, etc. There is no exact definition for scent-free, fragrance-free or unscented. Products labelled as unscented may actually contain ingredients that are used to mask or hide
the smell of other ingredients.

Definition: Odour or fragrance
If a product formulation has been amended to add or change a fragrance, terms such as “fresh scent”, “floral scent” or “lemon scent” that describe the resulting odour may be added by notification. The terms “fragrance-free” or “unscented” may be added by notification if the product is odourless or nearly odourless, and contains no odour-
masking ingredients such as a perfume. The term “de-scented” may be added if the product contains an odour-masking ingredient. (Regulatory Directive DIR2013-02, Notification/Non-notification, Section 3.10, p. 7. Health Canada)

While it is important to be aware of the lack of consistency when these terms are used by various manufacturers, the terms can still be a rough guideline when choosing products.

What types of products are associated with environmental sensitivities?
Any product or chemical may be associated with environmental sensitivities. As stated by the Public Service Commission of Canada, “Individuals with environmental sensitivities may have adverse reactions to foods, chemicals or environmental agents, singly or in combination. Environmental sensitivities include adverse reactions to
specific allergens, such as cleaning agents, person hygiene products, dust, perfumes or building construction materials”.

Ingredients or chemicals used to produce scents are present in a very large range of products, including (this is not an exhaustive list so other products may trigger a response):

 shampoo and conditioners
 hairsprays
 deodorants
 colognes and aftershaves
 fragrances and perfumes
 lotions and creams
 soaps, detergents, fabric softeners
 potpourri
 industrial and household chemicals
 cosmetics
 air fresheners and deodorizers
 oils
 candles

It is important to remember some products which claim to be “scent free” may have only masked the scent by use of an additional chemical. Be sure to research the product carefully if using scented products around those who are sensitive.

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