The 12th Invest in ME Conference, Part 1
OverTheHills presents the first article in a series of three about the recent 12th Invest In ME international Conference (IIMEC12) in London.
Discuss the article on the Forums.

Petition against air fresheners in Uber taxis

Discussion in 'Petitions' started by MeSci, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6?

    Messages:
    7,968
    Likes:
    12,806
    Cornwall, UK
    Jennifer J likes this.
  2. Basilico

    Basilico Florida

    Messages:
    827
    Likes:
    1,974
    If this were in official taxis, I think it could be successful. The main problem with trying to pass something like this with Uber or Lyft or whatever is that people are 'private contractors' using their personal cars, so there is not a way to regulate what they do in their own cars on their own time

    If the person wants an air freshener in their car, they are likely going to keep using it, and then maybe hide it or temporarily remove it when they are working, but the chemical smell will still be in the fabric of the car. This is one of the trade-offs for getting a much cheaper fare. Everything has trade-offs. A taxi, on the other hand, is solely used for work and can more easily be regulated. That ability to regulate comes with a slightly higher cost.

    I know that MCS is a really big problem, but unfortunately I don't see this petition being successful, and I think the effort would be better spent focusing on something with a better chance of compliance. For example, having this petition ask for regulation of official taxis, so at least people know that if they pay a little more for a taxi, they are guaranteed to not have the air freshener issue.
     
    Sancar, sb4 and Hugo like this.
  3. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6?

    Messages:
    7,968
    Likes:
    12,806
    Cornwall, UK
    I think it's worth raising awareness - after all, ME sufferers will be put off using taxis if there is a risk that they will be exposed to perfumes in them, and it will notify the bosses that there is a problem that may affect their profits!

    Also, a high percentage of people are allergic to perfumes, not just ME sufferers.
     
  4. Old Bones

    Old Bones Senior Member

    Messages:
    808
    Likes:
    4,906
    Regrettably, air fresheners(?) in vehicles are only the "tip of the iceberg" when it comes to scented products. It's summer, a time to enjoy fresh air on the patio -- except when the neighbours are doing laundry. I've never been able to understand people who wouldn't dream of using pesticides in their gardens, while at the same time putting their children to bed in pyjamas, and on bedding, washed with laundry detergent and fabric softeners full of carcinogenic and neuro-toxic scent chemicals.
     
    Gingergrrl, Sancar, Tammy and 3 others like this.
  5. Basilico

    Basilico Florida

    Messages:
    827
    Likes:
    1,974
    I still think a better strategy would be to focus on taxis, for the reason that they are commercial vehicles and as such can be regulated. Plus, taxis have been losing a lot of marketshare to Uber and others, and if it were presented to them as a way to regain customers, they might be more receptive to it. I just don't see most Uber drivers, who are currently paid very little once expenses are accounted for, being willing to not use air fresheners, perfume, aftershave, scented laundry detergent, scented shampoo/conditioner/soap, etc... for a couple bucks here and there.

    MCS is a really huge problem for a relatively small number of people. I'm not saying this to dismiss anyone, but we need to be realistic here. For people with MCS, I know it's truly awful, but I think when trying to make changes it is really important to have a strategy that has a reasonable expectation of working. I think in the unlikely event Uber did have a rule, it would be extremely difficult if not impossible to enforce, and would probably result in a LOT of drivers walking away from the company...which Uber might not be willing to risk since they are hemorrhaging money like crazy and are posting losses year after year. I don't think they'd be keen to jeopardize availability of drivers.

    What might work instead of a petition asking for an unenforcible across-the-board ban would be to ask Uber to promote the idea that specific drivers could choose to be chemical-free, or to have some kind of option on the app so that drivers can request a chemical-free driver, in exchange for a small surcharge. Once there is a financial incentive, I bet more and more drivers might be willing to go this route. In general, when trying to get a person or company to change a policy, it's always a good idea to present concrete actionable things they can do that are mutually beneficial. I'm afraid that just signing a petition like this is a real waste of time that could be better spent.
     
    sb4 likes this.
  6. TenuousGrip

    TenuousGrip Senior Member

    Messages:
    173
    Likes:
    576
    Without regard to how likely the petition is to succeed ....

    Uber/Lyft may have independent contractors as drivers but they do have requirements for the vehicles used in order to be used with their service.

    So ... while I don't know if they would agree to this sort of regulation, my suspicion is that they could if they chose to ;-)
     
    Gingergrrl, Sancar, Basilico and 2 others like this.
  7. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6?

    Messages:
    7,968
    Likes:
    12,806
    Cornwall, UK
    I don't think they realise that these things are unnatural and potentially harmful. They trust the advertisers.
     
    Sancar, Jennifer J and Old Bones like this.
  8. Starlight

    Starlight Senior Member

    Messages:
    124
    Likes:
    658
    I really hope this idea spreads,it really affects me badly. I find the fabric softener in washing powders really bad also.Somany seem to be using these products now I can find only one product I can use on clothes.i sometimes wonder if I should stockpile it in case it goes off the market.
     
    MeSci, Old Bones and Jennifer J like this.
  9. Marigold7

    Marigold7 Senior Member

    Messages:
    430
    Likes:
    1,205
    Fabric softeners! I buy eg nightdresses from charity shops and they reek of the stuff.Makes me ill. Straight into the wash then dry outside in the Irish rain! I do not see any need for fabric softeners and use a simple non bio powder and dry outside. Never use taxis thankfully. I shop early in the day else get .. gassed....
     
  10. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6?

    Messages:
    7,968
    Likes:
    12,806
    Cornwall, UK
    I use unscented washing products, for example soapnuts, or there are other unscented products available in several places. This is the only place I've found so far today, but there are others: http://forums.phoenixrising.me/index.php?threads/laundry-issues.2902
     
  11. Starlight

    Starlight Senior Member

    Messages:
    124
    Likes:
    658
    Thank you for the link,I have tried almost everything out there.The only one I can use is called surcare.would love to find a few more.are the soap nuts good? I haven't used those yet?.
     
  12. Old Bones

    Old Bones Senior Member

    Messages:
    808
    Likes:
    4,906
    @Starlight Fortunately, we have no difficulty sourcing unscented laundry products close to home, and the rest we order on-line. So, I haven't felt the need to try soap nuts. But, one of my friends has used soap nuts exclusively in their household for years, and raves about them. This is a senior couple, so their clothes wouldn't be heavily soiled. But I suspect that would be your situation as well.

    Otherwise, have you considered making your own? I don't think it is difficult, and it looks like the ingredients are pretty mainstream. Here's a link to some "recipes":

    http://www.davidsuzuki.org/publications/downloads/2011/QueenOfGreen-Green-cleaning-recipes.pdf
     
    Starlight likes this.
  13. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6?

    Messages:
    7,968
    Likes:
    12,806
    Cornwall, UK
    I find them OK for most things, but I'm not the world's best washer!

    You may find this organisation/leaflet useful: https://www.mcs-aware.org/shop/leaflets-posters/fragrance-free-leaflet-detail

    (go to 'Free download here.')

    Here are some more links, not up-to-date:

    http://www.vivienpomfrey.co.uk/parfum/appendix2.html
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
    Starlight likes this.
  14. Starlight

    Starlight Senior Member

    Messages:
    124
    Likes:
    658
    Thanks for thiose links I will look at them as contact with scents and chemicals cause big asthma issues for me.
     
    MeSci likes this.
  15. Daniel E.

    Daniel E.

    Messages:
    8
    Likes:
    7
    Wow. Can't believe this petition would change anything related to air fresheners in Uber cars.
     

See more popular forum discussions.

Share This Page