Monday, January 24, 2011

Food Allergies a Disability

Right before Christmas, a young girl died of food allergy anaphylaxis in Chicago as a result of eating a contaminated food at a school function.
The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology suggests that ER visits for food-related reactions has significantly increased

Reading some of the recent articles reminded me of the seriousness of Bee's health issues.  You don't want to ever imagine.........

I question how many places handle the topic of food allergies.  Schools tend to be one of the scariest and most unsafe places for any food allergic child.  Every party or function has food, and with one teacher for more than 20 kids, how can any child be kept safe?

So, many parents lobby to have snacks removed from classrooms and to have food-free functions.  They expend so much time, energy, and frustration fighting their battle.  Why even send your child there?  It would not be worth it to me.  That's why I'm glad we have chosen to homeschool.  That's one huge stressor removed.

But it made me wonder why food allergies aren't more recognized, and provisions and safeguards made for food-allergic people.  Why do parents have to fight school districts so diligently in order to keep their kids safe?  Why do I have to be afraid to fly on an airplane?  Why can't we go out to eat anywhere?

Why don't institutions and places of business work to accommodate those with food allergies?

Do food allergies classify as a disability?

My child was born with this problem and it is certainly a very limiting condition.

If handicap ramps and doors are required, parking passes are issued, and many policies are instituted against discrimination for a wide variety of conditions, then how do food allergies not qualify?

A child in a wheelchair would have severe limitations if his/her school was not wheelchair accessible and this would reduce his/her ability to function, get to classes, and ultimately be successful and productive.

You have food with nuts in my child's classroom and this would affect my child's ability to live through that class period. 

I find death to be very disabling, don't you?

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