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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 11:30 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
Not too long ago, an article appeared about allergies in schools in the new Canadian Health magazine. For some reason I can't find a reference to it here - maybe I never posted about it.

The article can be found at http://www.canadian-health.ca/english/v ... -20-e.html .

A member of the OASG took the time to read the fine print on that article and pointed out that:
- It recommends people download the emergency anaphylaxis plan of FAAN (the US-based anaphylaxis advocacy group), rather than the one from our own national anaphylaxis guidelines ( http://www.allergysafecommunities.ca/as ... an_eng.pdf ).
- It doesn’t even mention the Allergy Safe Communities website ( http://www.allergysafecommunities.ca ).
- It doesn't even mention Anaphylaxis Canada

(See http://www.canadian-health.ca/english/v ... page3.html - "the experts’ advice" - item 2.)

We found it to be such a shame, given that it's the Canadian Medical Association who published the article. We were not impressed with their research!

So she wrote a letter to the editor. That letter has been published - but so has another one that is, quite frankly, egregious. Take a look at the letters at

http://www.canadian-health.ca/english/v ... 2-6-e.html

and let me know what you think of the letter from Jennifer Williamson from Surrey BC comparing people with severe food allergies to customer service reps. :evil:

Wow - I didn't realize that my kids were going to get paid to deal with life-threatening allergies. They have quite a lot of back pay coming. My DH and I will be able to retire early! :roll:

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 1:40 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
First, I'd like to point out that I am not a strong supporter of peanut-bans. (please see note below However, I don't oppose them, and I hate reading what I consider *dumb* arguments against them.

Quote:
You could counter that a peanut-free school is no different from a wheelchair-accessible school. But ramps and elevators do not impact on others, whereas a peanut-free environment limits the nutritious foods students can bring to school.


How can anyone say that ramps and elevators do not impact others, specifically in a school. Does this person have ANY concept of the cost of adding and maintaining those things. Dollars that could instead be put into education. And, of course, it doesn't stop there -- the playscape will eventually have additions for wheel-chairs. Bathrooms need to be updated.

The dollars that are spent on any *special needs* child is enormous. And, of course, there is also all the *special needs* regarding learning disabilities, add adhd, etc.

There is a lot of healthy food that does not include peanut butter. It might cost more -- but not as much as the other monies spent on special needs kids. (Spoken from the parent of a child going through some of those educational dollars as we speak. ;) )

**********

I don't want to turn this into a debate about peanut-free. I just think sometimes it's not the best choice and that each individual school needs to look at all it's students needs.

_________________
self: allergy to sesame seeds and peanuts
3 sons each with at least one of the following allergies: peniciilin, sulfa-based antibiotic, latex, insect bites/stings


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 2:15 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:48 pm
Posts: 614
Location: Ontario, Canada / Cambridge, UK
I am surprised that Canadian Health published such an ignorant letter. They were probably trying to show both sides but this letter is just plain nasty.

Quote:
The rest of the school should not have to suffer consequences because of a single student.


Since when is going a school day without peanut butter suffering? Never mind the poor kids who have had anaphylactic reactions or have to deal with life-threatening allergies on a daily basis. What about the kids who are made to feel like they don't belong or don't have the right to attend the school? Or having to deal with people's ignorance and being teased by other children... all those things are suffering.

Geeezzzz!!!! :roll:

Peanut ban or not... these are all real issues that allergic children must face at school.

Jennifer Williamson sounds like she works in customer service and hates her job. I can't see any other reason why she would come up with such a ridiculous analogy.

I guess if she had her way, all allergic children would spend their entire life inside the house... seeing as they can't attend school or play at other children's homes. This woman needs some awareness-raising pronto!

_________________
16-year-old son: peanuts, nuts, raw egg whites, asthmatic
Self: allergic rhinitis, fragrance/chemical sensitivities, oral allergy syndrome


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 3:57 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2006 10:26 pm
Posts: 89
Location: Toronto
Okay...customer service...nut allergy...what? That is the most bizarre analogy I have ever heard! I would have to agree with Storm...can you say bitter customer service rep? :lol:
Ang

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6 1/2 year old son - anaphylactic to tree nuts, allergic to dust and moulds
5 1/2 year old son - no allergies
15 month old son...allergies unknown


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 4:50 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2005 12:09 am
Posts: 1054
Peanut ban issue aside, I just get so tired when I read letters like that. It's the ongoing struggle to get people to try to see that we're comparing the right to eating peanuts (9 times out of 10, peanut butter) to a child's life. God forbid we impose an expectation on others to actually consider how their actions affect another human being. Please remind me why it is that parents think that it's a bad thing that we teach our children to be mindful and considerate of others... especially when we're talking about life and death. *sigh*


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 6:03 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
And, if a parent is so self-absorbed that they feel the right to a pb sandwich (or whatever) is more imporant that some *other* kids life -- how would that parent feel knowing that their child witnessed a fatal reaction and knew they had caused it? (I'm not talking bullying, but just bringing in an allergen and something doesn't get cleaned enough.) Would they want their child living with that guilt? Maybe if it becomes *personal* they might start to care? Well, no, probably not, but for a second or two there I had some hope......

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self: allergy to sesame seeds and peanuts
3 sons each with at least one of the following allergies: peniciilin, sulfa-based antibiotic, latex, insect bites/stings


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 8:22 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
That's what I was thinking, AM. How awful would someone feel if they were responsible for another student's severe allergic reaction or even death? That would be hideous... :(

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 11:01 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6502
Location: Ottawa
My first thought...selfish!

My second thought is that most provinces have a safe schools act or policy or program, below are just a few.
These tend to take the approach of tolerance and respect. I am not hearing this from this writer.

http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/sco/guide/scoguide_sec_1.pdf

http://www.sacsc.ca/Why_SACSC_for_youth ... ention.htm

http://www.sasked.gov.sk.ca/branches/cu ... pect04.pdf

http://web2.gov.mb.ca/laws/statutes/2004/c02404e.php

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/ssareview/report0626.pdf

http://www.meq.gouv.qc.ca/DGFJ/csc/prom ... 62-01a.pdf

http://www.ed.gov.nl.ca/edu/dept/pdf/sc ... policy.pdf

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Moderator
Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2007 9:50 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2006 1:05 pm
Posts: 528
Location: Burlington, Ontario
Boy, imagine the economic impact if all children with food allergies had to be homeschooled? That would mean one parent would have to give up his or her career, which would mean a significant drop in revenue, etc. Yes, it would be a labour of love but not everybody is in a position to do so and thank God that people like Jennifer Wilson will not win this argument. No child should be denied the right to go to school. Nowhere does it say that every child should have the right to eat pb in school.

She also fails to see that not bringing allergens in a school is about compassion, patience, kindness and tolerance. (All things you need by the way to work in customer service...)

_________________
15 year old - asthmatic, allergic to cats, dogs, horses, waiting to be "officially" diagnosed for anaphylaxis
12 year old - asthmatic, allergic to tree pollen and mold, OAS
Husband - Allergic to amoxycillin
Self - Allergic to housework only


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2007 4:15 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
Quote:
That would mean one parent would have to give up his or her career, which would mean a significant drop in revenue, etc.


Yes actually that IS the situation in our house. Do I think it is fair...NO...but that's my reality. If people want to say things like "then they should be homeschooled" than they should also think it is fair that their school boards hand over the money that the school would recieve for that childs education (about $8500/child/year) to the parents. I don't exactly expect THAT will happen anytime soon.

_________________
DD age 9 1/2 -peanuts, nuts,
DD age 7 1/2 - milk, eggs, chicken, peanuts, treenuts, cats, dogs,
DS age 2 1/2
Husband- asthma, eggs, treenuts, fish, shellfish environmental
Self - penicillan, eurithromiacin, mild laytex allergy.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2007 4:38 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2006 1:05 pm
Posts: 528
Location: Burlington, Ontario
No kidding, Saskmommy, that's an excellent point. Not to mention that more money is needed to educate other handicapped children, but no one would or should question that. Do you at least get some kind of tax break?

Of course, that's only one person's opinion, and people with this slanted point of view are thankfully few and very far between. We have to bear in mind that the governments and the school boards would never go for that.

_________________
15 year old - asthmatic, allergic to cats, dogs, horses, waiting to be "officially" diagnosed for anaphylaxis
12 year old - asthmatic, allergic to tree pollen and mold, OAS
Husband - Allergic to amoxycillin
Self - Allergic to housework only


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2007 6:27 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
saskmommyof2 wrote:
Quote:
That would mean one parent would have to give up his or her career, which would mean a significant drop in revenue, etc.


Yes actually that IS the situation in our house. Do I think it is fair...NO...but that's my reality. If people want to say things like "then they should be homeschooled" than they should also think it is fair that their school boards hand over the money that the school would recieve for that childs education (about $8500/child/year) to the parents. I don't exactly expect THAT will happen anytime soon.


I knew of two people that had to take their children out of school -- one due to a health problem and one due to severe behaviour problems. The government was required in both cases to provide a tutor for the student, and to provide all necessary learning materials. (The health problem was not allergies, I don't know the name of the problem.) The cost per student was well above $8500.

_________________
self: allergy to sesame seeds and peanuts
3 sons each with at least one of the following allergies: peniciilin, sulfa-based antibiotic, latex, insect bites/stings


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2007 7:23 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:48 pm
Posts: 614
Location: Ontario, Canada / Cambridge, UK
Jennifer Williamson should hook up with Tim Nutt. They'd make a good couple.

Just my attempt at humour... :twisted: :D

_________________
16-year-old son: peanuts, nuts, raw egg whites, asthmatic
Self: allergic rhinitis, fragrance/chemical sensitivities, oral allergy syndrome


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2007 10:35 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
Quote:
Do you at least get some kind of tax break?


No. What I get it $165 this year for my kindergarten aged child, and will get $333/perchild/year for grades one and up to cover the cost of materials, supplies etc. But...I do not recieve it until June. I've heard other school districts give more, like up to as high as $1000/year/child. I do consider that lucky because I don't think anyone in the U.S. gets a dime. There are "free" programs in a lot of places, which also provide you with a curriculum, a computer and other supplies in exchange for your flexibility and freedom. Neither of which I am willing to give up. I mean...if it is a nice day (during "school hours") and I want to take my girls sledding...I don't need someone telling me I can't.

And Storm that was pretty funny :lol: .

_________________
DD age 9 1/2 -peanuts, nuts,
DD age 7 1/2 - milk, eggs, chicken, peanuts, treenuts, cats, dogs,
DS age 2 1/2
Husband- asthma, eggs, treenuts, fish, shellfish environmental
Self - penicillan, eurithromiacin, mild laytex allergy.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 10, 2007 9:39 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2006 1:05 pm
Posts: 528
Location: Burlington, Ontario
Saskmommy, you can always use your sledding session to teach your kids the laws of physics, lol!

You should definitely take mental breaks, schools do plenty of that, like movie days, and carnival days, celebration this and celebration that. They hardly ever teach the whole day through.

_________________
15 year old - asthmatic, allergic to cats, dogs, horses, waiting to be "officially" diagnosed for anaphylaxis
12 year old - asthmatic, allergic to tree pollen and mold, OAS
Husband - Allergic to amoxycillin
Self - Allergic to housework only


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