The Canadian parliament is scheduled to vote on a motion that could pave the way for increased awareness, meaningful policies and laws surrounding food allergy and anaphylaxis.
“With Motion M-230, we want to look at how we can help coordinate a thoughtful government response to anaphylaxis, to raise public understanding of life threatening allergies, and to provide greater safety for a growing number of Canadians and their families,” explains MP Dean Allison, who put forward the motion.
The motion reads as follows:
“That in the opinion of the House, anaphylaxis is a serious concern for an increasing number of Canadians and the government should take the appropriate measures necessary to ensure these Canadians are able to maintain a high quality of life.”
Originally put forward in 2010 as M-546 by Allison, the MP for Niagara West-Glanbrook, the motion was lost with the dissolution of that year’s parliament. Now called M-230, the motion will be debated in the House of Commons on April 19, 2013 at 1:30 pm.
The Canadian Anaphylaxis Initiative (CAI), which has worked alongside Allison to promote M-230, is urging Canadians to get behind the motion. They can do so by writing, telephoning or visiting their MP to explain how important this motion is, and asking whether their support can be counted on. (If you are in the Ottawa area, join in by getting a gallery pass for the debate through your MP’s office.) If you can’t attend, watch the debate live at CPAC.ca.
Related to the motion is the CAI’s five-point policy approach, which was debated alongside it in March 2011 and involves the following:
• Federal Coordination – of programs and services dealing with anaphylaxis and food allergy
• Coordinated Awareness Campaigns – both targeted and general public information initiatives
• Long Term Commitment to Research – a strategic response and more dollars for research
• Improved Allergen Labelling – for foods, drugs, cosmetic and personal care products
• Improved Transportation Safeguards – airline and public transportation policies that reduce risk for food allergic passengers
For more information, visit the Canadian Anaphylaxis Initiative.