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Below is the closest approximation I have to the speech I gave at the Fulton City School District School Board Meeting last night. I almost didn’t go because my sensitivities were in high gear. I got to the parking lot and  immediately walked through a plume of perfume (loaded with the government legally sanctioned toxic chemicals). I walked into the building that was let’s not be dramatic here — had enough fragrance to be life threatening for me. I sat with my mask on. I almost got up and left. But I needed to speak out for three reasons: ONE to thank the superintendent for pledging to make changes and TWO there was a large number of parents and children there. This was the audience that needed to hear what the  government is allowing to be done to their children. And THREE is this is Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week.

To be honest as I entered the building it was so bad I could barely write my name on the sign in sheet and when I left (and still this morning) my throat is very tight and my body hurts so bad I can barely walk. So if someone reads this that heard me speak and something is not quite what I said — correct me — but this is the essence of what I said.

Good Evening,

I am a lifelong resident of Fulton, employee of Fulton City School District, FTA member, mother of G. Ray Bodley alum.

This week is Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week. It is my goal that we will no longer need an awareness week because all will be educated of the toxins legally placed in synthetic fragrances. Many in the room have probably heard of diabetes. Approximately, 6% of the population suffer from this. Most in this room have probably not heard of MCS or multiple chemical sensitivities. Approximately, 16% of population suffer from MCS and the number is rising. I and my son suffer from MCS. The government allows toxic chemicals to legally be put in fragrances. You may have seen me wearing my mask. The toxic chemicals are not required on the labels.

Lao-tzu once said, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”

I want to personally thank the superintendent of schools for taking the very large step to declare to me that finding a way to remove the toxic fragrances from our schools is a priority for him.

I believe one gets whatever one puts their focus on. In our conversation the focus was on education and the healthy future of our kids and who wouldn’t want more of that. I am here tonight to ask everyone on the Board, in this room, the FTA, parents, and all members of the Fulton City School District Community to support the superintendent as he endeavors to explore policy changes to make our schools fragrance free. I understand that the road to policy change has many steps, many discussions, laws and compromises.

I want to thank the superintendent for making this commitment. I ask that if parents receive a letter requesting them to help make our schools fragrance free that you do not yell at the superintendent. If this makes you angry please yell at the government that allows the toxins to be put in our personal care products.

This change will help ensure that our kids have full and healthy lives.

Thank you.

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