Scents & Sensibility

You’ve probably heard this one by now [The Detroit News]:

City employees with a strong aroma of perfume, cologne or any scented products will soon be in for a warning.

Detroit officials have plans to place placards in three city buildings detailing scented products to avoid due to a settlement in a widely publicized federal lawsuit filed by a city planner in 2008 and settled last month.

The placards will be placed in the Cadillac Square Building, Coleman A. Young Municipal Center and First National Building. They ask employees to refrain from "wearing scented products, including … colognes, aftershave lotions, perfumes, deodorants, body/face lotions … (and) the use of scented candles, perfume samples from magazines, spray or solid air fresheners …"

The changes stem from a lawsuit filed by a city employee who alleged she had a “breathing sensitivity” to “chemical products.” The city of Detroit settled her Americans With Disabilities Act case for $100,000.

Look, we all work with Johnny Aftershave, whose olfactory senses were apparently destroyed in a teenage glue-sniffing incident (or something).  There’s a guy in our building who smells like he drinks Axe Body Spray.* But asking employees to “refrain” from using deodorant in CAYMC, perhaps the most environmentally unpredictable courthouse I’ve ever visited seems like a dangerous alternative.

Unless of course, this one person is not sensitive to B.O. (like the rest of us are).

* Fear not, Leaders In The Law! This person is not a Michigan Lawyers Weekly employee!

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