“It Smells and It’s Making Me Sick: Employer Responsibility Around Fragrance and Odor Sensitivity and Workplace Accommodation”

On Demand Webinar Duration 60 Minutes Credits HRCI 1 & SHRM 1 PDCs

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Speaker: Melveen Stevenson is the CEO and founder of M.S.Elemental, LLC, a human resources and business advisory firm based in Los Angeles, California.


When the subject of workplace accommodations comes up, most managers and supervisors think about the more common situations such as an employee recovering after surgery. Or perhaps, they recall an employee who had an ongoing physical – and mostly visible - disability.

These days, however, employees are approaching their employers with health problems triggered and perpetuated by odor and fragrance sensitivity.

Most managers and supervisors are unprepared for how to best manage these discussions. More concerning, however, is that they are unsure of their obligations on what to do in the short- and long-term.

In some cases, the employee’s fragrance sensitivity can be a qualifying condition, but one that is extremely tricky to accommodate in a standard workplace setting filled with other employees and scents of all kinds.

It doesn’t need to be mysterious nor complicated for you to understand your requirements and to translate this knowledge into a practical approach for working through and accommodating your fragrance-sensitive employees.

By attending this 60-minute training, you’ll learn the basics of fragrance sensitivity and allergies as a possible job-hindering condition. More importantly, you’ll be better equipped to handle questions and concerns around this topic.

Areas Covered

Discuss common job-related issues for employees with allergies and fragrance sensitivities.

  • Review ADA and EEOC positions on accommodation of odor/fragrance sensitivity and allergies in the workplace.
  • Enumerate ideas to consider for your odor-sensitive employee.
  • Present sample questions to help you understand your specific employee’s situation and identify the best course of action.
  • Walk through scenarios to demonstrate practical approaches for managing odor-sensitivity issues.
  • Walk through sample language for a company odor and fragrance policy.

Who will Benefit

  • Human resources professionals and consultants
  • Employee relations professionals
  • Employee benefits professionals
  • Office managers
  • Managers and supervisor
  • Business owners

This activity has been approved for 1 HR (General) recertification credit hours toward aPHR, PHR, PHRca, SPHR, GPHR, PHRi and SPHRi recertification through HR Certification Institute (HRCI). Please make note of the activity ID number on your recertification application form. For more information about certification or recertification, please visit the HR Certification Institute website at www.hrci.org

This program is valid for 1 PDCs for the SHRM-CP® or SHRM-SCP®

Your Instructor

Melveen Stevenson
Melveen Stevenson

Melveen Stevenson is the CEO and founder of M.S.Elemental, LLC, a human resources and business advisory firm based in Los Angeles, California. As a certified HR professional with a background in accounting and finance, she helps companies to navigate the human resources “jungle” of compliance, human capital, and leadership challenges. By using an encompassing business approach, she helps to strengthen the infrastructure of organizations from the inside out, specifically through leadership development, operations, training, employee engagement, and executive coaching.

Over the last 17 years, Melveen has held leadership positions in human resources operations, supply chain, and talent management at international companies in food manufacturing, medical devices, and consumer products. She has also worked internationally.

Melveen began her career in accounting and international banking. With an inspired desire to support and drive organizational success through human capital, she redirected her career and obtained her MBA at Michigan State University’s Eli Broad Graduate School of Management.

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