Green Feminist Smart Phone App Points Women Toward...Cleaners?

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Results from NoDryClean for safe dry cleaners in San Francisco

It seems rather odd that The National Organization for Women, California Chapter (CANOW) is celebrating Earth Day by announcing a new app that points people toward green cleaners. Really? Feminists would focus on better access to laundry facilities for Earth Day? But as we remember why finding nontoxic cleaners are so important, the pieces start to click into place. NOW's California chapter wants people to find safe cleaners in order to avoid the carcinogenic chemical perchloroethylene (tetrachloroethylene) used in dry cleaning that is known to cause cancer - including breast and cervical cancers. So, their new smart phone app launches today, which makes it easy to find a non-toxic cleaner near you. "We cheer the wonderful fundraising efforts of sister organizations towards a cure, while pointing out the disproportionate shortage of research and study in prevention of cancer," points out CANOW president, Patricia Bellasalma, who encourages consumers to visit Breast Cancer Action to learn more. has an app for Android users, with an iPhone app on its way.

The group points readers toward a Greenpeace report entitled DRESSED TO KILL: The Dangers of Dry Cleaning and the Case for Chlorine-free Alternatives, as well as an excerpt from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration website on perchloroethylene:

"Exposure to hazardous chemicals commonly used in dry cleaning shops may occur through skin absorption, eye contact, or inhalation of the vapors. Perchloroethylene (PERC), a potential human carcinogen, is the most commonly used dry cleaning solvent. Symptoms associated with exposure include: depression of the central nervous system; damage to the liver and kidneys; impaired memory; confusion; dizziness; headache; drowsiness; and eye, nose, and throat irritation. Repeated dermal exposure may result in dermatitis."

Even if you don't have a smart phone, you can hop on and enter your zipcode to find out what safe alternatives to dry cleaning you have near you.

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