This petition is in response to a petition started by a Cambridge, ON Mom entitled "End Nut Ban in Waterloo Region District School Board."
This mom claims that Sabrina's Law shouldn't cover life threatening peanut allergies and that her daughter should be allowed to eat nuts when she's bored of food - "It's not that I want to send my kid to school with peanuts every single day," said H. "It's just that when my kid gets sick of something … I'd like to have the option of saying you can have this today, knowing she's actually going to get a chance to eat it and not have it taken away and her come home crying she's starving."(quote taken from online newspaper article)
I have read her petition and all of her supporters comments and I can't help but wonder- when did LIFE THREATENING food allergies become worth a debate? Is risking children's lives worth it because you're inconvenienced having to come up with a solution to buy safe nut free options to make lunches ?
The fact of the matter is (especially in elementary school) little fingers get sticky messes everywhere and peanut butter (and peanut proteins) can be easily spread - onto toys or doorknobs, clothing etc.
Kids haven't learned yet at such young ages how to a) wash hands and surfaces properly in order to protect anaphylactic classmates
b) how not to touch their eyes , put their fingers in the mouth etc and risk a reaction from cross contamination.
I am a food allergy mom and my stomach is in knots thinking about how a sandwich can end my sons life.
If peanut butter is really that important to some, rather than risking kids lives for your convenience, take your child home for lunch.
I understand a lot of families who don't deal with food allergies may be annoyed with the policy - but what you don't see is what kids with food allergies live with.
•eating disorders because food can kill
•anxiety being away from their safe zones
and many many more.
Food allergies go beyond contact. Some can be airborn. A mom recently told me about a child who is allergic to peanuts sharing a bathroom with a child who was sent to wash up because they went against policy and brought in a PB sandwich and other nut laced treats. A teacher caught this child eating it and asked them to wash their face and hands. As they were doing so a anaphylactic child (to peanuts) was using the public washroom and went into anaphylaxis just by breathing it in. This child was seen leaving the bathroom clenching at her throat unable to breathe. Could you imagine just how guilty the child who ate peanuts at lunch would feel had her schoolmate died? I imagine many children's lives would be affected by their peers deaths if this policy to protect anaphylactic children in schools is lifted.
I would like to add what a mom has mentioned to me. "I think a child's right to physical safety trumps another's convenience and what they can pack for lunch. "
Education:(please note:I am not a professional - rather just a mom who does her best to stay up to date on stats. I have shared info from credible resources- but always do your own research if you'd like to stay up to date.)
•Peanuts/nuts account for 68 - 90% of the fatal and near fatal reactions, depending on the study quoted.
• 1 in 13 are affected by a life threatening allergy
• peanut allergies have risen by 400% since 2008
• life threatening food allergies were made a disease in 2016
• 70% of food allergy related deaths are between the ages of 12 - 21 years of age. It takes a village to keep them safe.
• Sabrina's Law protects more than just nut allergies. All children who struggle with life threatening allergies deserve to be protected
**** Please support my cause by signing and show your support in maintaining safe schools for children with (nut) allergies. ****