It’s “Do Something Wednesday” today..so grab the kids in your life, and sit down and have a frank discussion about media, advertising and the importance of “telling the whole truth” not just part of it. When it comes to our health, we too often put our trust in companies, politicians and community leaders – blindly assuming because they TELL US they are looking out for us, that we should believe them.
A new campaign by Women Voices for the Earth targeted at Glade Air Freshener, reminds us that we need to call out those companies when we find out they aren’t telling us the “whole truth” or are doing less then they should to safeguard our health and our best interests. Consider as well discussing with your kids how this concept of “trust” also extends to our politicians and community leaders.
Similar to the “Mind the Store Campaign” by Safer Chemicals Healthy Families, which our Climate Mama community has supported, this wonderful campaign is also asking a company many of us have supported for years to take back some of the responsibility they have unloaded on us, and help us look out for our health and that of our family by listing harmful ingredients (or removing them) from products we buy.
Watch this short video clip “spoof” from Women’s Voices for the Earth with the kids in your life. It shows us that a company many of us have relied on for many years, SC Johnson and Company, which is the maker of products like: Glade, Off, Pledge, Saran, Windex, to name a few, may not really have our best interests in mind, and in particular our health.
To help make this point, Women’s Voices for the Earth (WVE) has asked for our help in calling out Glade Air freshener. When you look at the list of ingredients, you will see listed “fragrance.” This is a common ingredient in many products we use and often can contain toxic chemicals. Yet in many European countries, they require that the list of ingredients in “fragrance” be spelled out. If you buy Glade in France, for example, you will see a long list of chemicals where only “fragrance” would be listed on that same product in the USA.
Alexandra Scranton, Director of Science and Research at WVE tells us:
Although air fresheners have become a staple in many homes and offices, the ingredients that make up those fresh and tropical scents are routinely kept secret from consumers like us—and some of those chemicals may be toxic. Studies are increasingly showing that chemicals in fragrance are harming our health, particularly the health of women and children:
One study of pregnant women showed a link between the use of air fresheners and aerosol sprays and an increase in headaches and depression in the mothers, as well as ear infections and diarrhea in their babies.
Certain hormone disrupting chemicals found in fragrance can have significant lifelong effects on reproductive health and development, like galaxolide and tonalide (detected in our blood, breast milk, and even newborns) and phthalates (linked to reproductive harm in baby boys).
Women are 2-3 times more likely than men to suffer from fragrance allergies. Women also become sensitized to fragrance at earlier ages than men.
Girls have higher sensitization rates to fragrance allergens than boys, and studies show increasing diagnoses of allergic contact dermatitis and eczema in children.
Research indicates that the more we used fragranced products, the higher the levels of fragrance chemicals in our bodies.
FYI, so far the only official response from SC Johnson has been: “Consumers have a choice whether or not to buy products that contain fragrance.” As far as we are concerned that is NOT OK!
Like so many climate related issues and problems we discuss here at Climate Mama, the onus is on us, the consumer, resident and citizen to find out the problems that surround us and try to make change. David vs Goliath..The people, companies and organizations we put our trust in to protect us, are too often conspicuously absent. NOT OK and not on our watch. Lets show them that “people power” can make a difference.
With many thanks – Yours,