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 Post subject: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 6:25 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 6:58 pm
Posts: 53
Location: Pickering
So I just started teachers college in Toronto this month. The school is supposed to be nut and peanut free so I figured I'd be safe and wouldn't have a problem...

The first and second week I kept noticing people bringing full bags of nuts to class and eating them on the desk :x .

I mentioned to one of my professors that I have a severe allergy to nuts and peanuts, and he kindly made an announcement to my classmates that day that one of your colleagues has a severe nut allergy, no more bags of nuts etc.

It has been a week since this announcement and I have seen bags of nuts every day since then STILL. I've said something to the people who have brought them and they apologize and put them away but REALLY? :banghead Don't worry about me or anything I'll just sit here and sanitize my hands until they're raw...

_________________
Cassandra 24 years old.
Allergic to peanuts/most treenuts, cats and dogs.
Grew out of lactose intolerance.


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 6:47 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:20 pm
Posts: 150
Location: Barrie Ontario Canada
I had the same problem in teacher's college. One teacher asked the class if anyone had any allergies (at that time mine was a suspected allergy but I still treated it like one) myself and another classmate both spoke up with tree nut allergies. It was agreed that our cohort would be nut free, no other cohort did this. We were a very close group but I still found many of them bringing in nut products. I was constantly reminding them not to eat nut products in class. I didn't care what they did on breaks just don't bring them to class. I got to know who usually brought them in and refused to sit near them or even talk to them. Some of them got the hint when they would sit beside me and I would get up and move :lol: Others just thought I was being too sensitive and that I needed to get over it. Either way I didn't care, my first concern was myself especially since I did not have an epipen at that time and I really didn't know what could happen (and I didn't want to find out :frightened )
Some suggestions I have is bring wipes and wipe your area off if you are concerned about who sat there before you and what they ate and if you need to get up and move. You're not being rude you are protecting yourself. They will either get the hint or think you are rude but in my opinion you are there to learn and you shouldn't have to worry about your health while you are there.
Good luck with your professional year! (the placements are the best part :happydance )

_________________
Sarah
Outgrew: Wheat, corn, egg, chicken, to name a few
Sensitive to Milk/Dairy products
Allergic to: Tree nuts, percocet, toradol, environmental allergies and chemical allergies
Migraines caused by scented products, barometric pressure


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 7:54 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 11:00 am
Posts: 1117
The terrifying part of both of your stories is that is Teachers College. :frightened

_________________
me: allergic to crustaceans plus environmental
teenager: allergic to hazelnuts, some other foods and environmental


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 8:12 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 6:58 pm
Posts: 53
Location: Pickering
Honestly!!!

They're going to have to deal with the nut-free thing for the rest of their lives so they better get used to it. You'd think they'd be more compassionate too, since they want to be teachers.

_________________
Cassandra 24 years old.
Allergic to peanuts/most treenuts, cats and dogs.
Grew out of lactose intolerance.


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 8:42 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:20 pm
Posts: 150
Location: Barrie Ontario Canada
I hate to say it but it seems like teachers are the worst! Everyday I have to remind the staff at the school I work at that I am allergic and that our BOARD is NUT/PEANUT FREE. They just don't seem to get it :banghead The funny thing is (well kinda) if I end up having a reaction and have to leave they have to cover my duties and my job. And trust me I have a duty every recess since I am the ONLY EA in the school! :rofl Maybe I should have a reaction just to see how they like my job :rofl (I think they'd miss me :wink: )

Last yr I actually told one teacher that I had a mild reaction just to get him to understand. He actually got it and he still remembers and I haven't caught him with nuts yet :bouncygreen

_________________
Sarah
Outgrew: Wheat, corn, egg, chicken, to name a few
Sensitive to Milk/Dairy products
Allergic to: Tree nuts, percocet, toradol, environmental allergies and chemical allergies
Migraines caused by scented products, barometric pressure


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 6:40 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 923
Location: Oakville, Ontario
It is very scary to be around your food allergens on a daily basis (:huggy to all dealing with this) . I worry everyday about sending my son to school because, even though the school asks for no peanuts or tree nuts (he is allergic to these as well), I know that he is around sesame seeds, eggs, fish (tuna and salmon sandwiches), mustard, poppy seeds and others. Those with dairy allergy must find this a real concern as well. We don't ask for those food items to not be present because it is such a big list. I feel that being around all of these allergens is a real concern, and no different than peanuts and tree nuts. All we can do is make sure he is well protected when he eats.

I wondered how you all feel about other food allergens beyond peanuts and tree nuts... how much can we expect from others in terms of accomodations in class? What is reasonable? I feel being around any allergen is scary and we must guard against all of them equally. At school, my son sits beside people on a daily basis who are eating something he is allergic to, and it worries/scares me, but he has never had an allergic reaction at school. I think if you protect yourself well, always carry wipes and never put your hands near your face if they are not clean, you should be safe. Do others share this view? If someone is eating your allergen right next to you, but you are not in direct contact, can we not still eat together? As long as the surface you are eating at is safe and your hands are clean, I think it's the best we can do.

What do others think?

_________________
15 yr old daughter: no health issues
12 yr old son: allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, fish, sesame, sunflower, mustard, poppy seeds, green peas, some fruits, instructed to avoid all other legumes (except soy & green beans), pollen, cats, horses


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:07 am 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6455
Location: Ottawa
ccarso and Sarah388-Does your school have an Accessibility Service such as this http://accessibility.utoronto.ca/about.htm

If the prof can't ensure the classrooms are safe, you might need to get additional help.

As others have stated, the teachers-to-be are going to have to become educated on this issue because they will have to conform to the policies once they beginning working in the schools or else they will have to deal with people like me! :verymad

...and trust me, they don't want to meet me.

_________________
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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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:51 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 7:23 pm
Posts: 817
Location: Kingston
There is a law in Ontario about accessibility that insures that those with disabilities are accommodated so as Susan has suggested look for that at your University and who can help you. The university have taken this very seriously so starting there may be a big help for you.

Last year I arranged for Sarah Shannon to come to a conference at Queens University for those who will graduate to be teachers. She did a presentation to about 150 student teachers. She spoke about Sabrina, Sabrina’s law and why it is important for teachers to understand the seriousness of anaphylaxis and how important it is for the teacher to be educated and aware. It was very well received.

Perhaps I can connect you to Sarah and she could come to your university and speak with the dean/profs/student teachers about anaphylaxis. She is a really busy lady but she may be able to. If not she could certainly suggest someone else. I know she thought it was beneficial at Queens.

_________________
Mary


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 2:21 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2008 9:40 pm
Posts: 2034
Location: ottawa
Ok, :frightened !!!!!!!! Apparently more education needs to be done all round.
Mgreenspan
Quote:
Last year I arranged for Sarah Shannon to come to a conference at Queens University for those who will graduate to be teachers.
What a powerful, personal way to connect teachers to the reality, severity of anaphylaxis. Sarah Shannon is a remarkable woman!

Ccarso and Sarah388, you have the right to go to work (school) safely and have teachers follow the same rules to keep students safe as co-workers. I agree that as teachers anaphylaxis, tree nut/pn issues are going to be a part of their lives, get used to it now!
All the best to you both and I'm sure many students will benefit from your knowledge regarding allergies. These 'other' teachers frankly, freak me out!!!!!

_________________
DD 12 yrs -no allergies
4 yr old DS - asthma/eczema Anaphylactic to Peanuts, all tree nuts, sesame , all pea/lentil legumes, gelatin.
Allergic to trees, grass,ragweed, feathers, dander, mold and dust.
Outgrew eggs, fish, shellfish


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 2:27 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2008 9:40 pm
Posts: 2034
Location: ottawa
Julie, in answer to your question. I am in the same boat (as I know many of us are) where although our school is pn/tn aware (I refuse to say free) DS has 3 other ana. allergies all eaten in the school/room. His individual classroom has removed sesame but that still leaves a lot of food eaten with his allergens in it in his classroom and the rest of the school. I must say that those parents dealing with milk/wheat etc. have it 1OOx worse and I truly feel for them!!!

I agree with you that if the eating area is clean, his hands are washed before eating...and someone reminds him over and over to never touch his face that chances of a reaction are greatly minimized. It terrifies me but it is life and with proper supervision he should be safe.

My mommy heart just wishes for a food free school..not going to happen though. :lol:

_________________
DD 12 yrs -no allergies
4 yr old DS - asthma/eczema Anaphylactic to Peanuts, all tree nuts, sesame , all pea/lentil legumes, gelatin.
Allergic to trees, grass,ragweed, feathers, dander, mold and dust.
Outgrew eggs, fish, shellfish


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:25 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:20 pm
Posts: 150
Location: Barrie Ontario Canada
At my school the argument is we don't have any students in the school with food allergies and I am an adult so why should the teachers limit themselves for no reason. Things have been a bit better, I have my breaks and lunch at a separate time than most of the staff so I can go into the staff room, clean the table before and after I eat and not worry about what others may have eaten. My main concern now is that I supply at other schools and they don't know about my allergy. I have had times when the staff brings in treats and they are home made. I don't touch them but I often wonder. Last yr one person brought in a banana nut loaf. :scratchy The teacher put a sign on "Contains Nuts" bc she knew a staff member had a nut allergy. I was sitting right there (I was supplying no one knew me at that school) and I got really nervous so I left and ate in my car. One part of me was glad she posted the sign but another part of me was annoyed that she would bring that into a school of that size with numerous children with ana allergies to nuts. I can just see those teachers eating then going back to their classrooms without washing their hands and being in such close quarters with those children. :frightened I guess I should have said something but being a supply is hard enough without angering the locals :lol:

On another note, I was in the staff room alone and noticed a anaphylaxis info kit. I was curious so I opened it up. It was covered with a layer of dust so obviously the teachers haven't used it in a long time. Inside I found an old epipen trainer and a twinject trainer, along with fact sheets and a letter from the ministry of ed about Sabrina's Law and why we have to have the training. I think if I happen to be in the staff room with the principal sometime soon I may stumble across it and mention that the epipen is the old one and that we need to be trained on the new one. I will even volunteer to bring in my trainers.

_________________
Sarah
Outgrew: Wheat, corn, egg, chicken, to name a few
Sensitive to Milk/Dairy products
Allergic to: Tree nuts, percocet, toradol, environmental allergies and chemical allergies
Migraines caused by scented products, barometric pressure


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:34 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:20 pm
Posts: 150
Location: Barrie Ontario Canada
Julie wrote:
It is very scary to be around your food allergens on a daily basis (:huggy to all dealing with this) . I worry everyday about sending my son to school because, even though the school asks for no peanuts or tree nuts (he is allergic to these as well), I know that he is around sesame seeds, eggs, fish (tuna and salmon sandwiches), mustard, poppy seeds and others. Those with dairy allergy must find this a real concern as well. We don't ask for those food items to not be present because it is such a big list. I feel that being around all of these allergens is a real concern, and no different than peanuts and tree nuts. All we can do is make sure he is well protected when he eats.

I wondered how you all feel about other food allergens beyond peanuts and tree nuts... how much can we expect from others in terms of accomodations in class? What is reasonable? I feel being around any allergen is scary and we must guard against all of them equally. At school, my son sits beside people on a daily basis who are eating something he is allergic to, and it worries/scares me, but he has never had an allergic reaction at school. I think if you protect yourself well, always carry wipes and never put your hands near your face if they are not clean, you should be safe. Do others share this view? If someone is eating your allergen right next to you, but you are not in direct contact, can we not still eat together? As long as the surface you are eating at is safe and your hands are clean, I think it's the best we can do.

What do others think?


I think it would be very hard to ban all top allergens. You think parents are upset now imagine if we tried to ban dairy, wheat, egg, etc. We would be banned ourselves from the school due to the uproar. I understand what you mean by treating all allergens the same. All children should feel safe going to school and eating their lunch. I know some schools in my board have a special room for the kids with allergies to eat in if they wish. They may also bring in friends as long as they are willing to follow the rules and not bring in banned food. I'm not sure how they do it with all the possible allergens but I guess it depends on the needs of those in the room. I know this is segregating those with allergies but it is one way to solve the problem. I know other schools have 'allergy tables' in rooms where they are needed.

_________________
Sarah
Outgrew: Wheat, corn, egg, chicken, to name a few
Sensitive to Milk/Dairy products
Allergic to: Tree nuts, percocet, toradol, environmental allergies and chemical allergies
Migraines caused by scented products, barometric pressure


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2011 2:38 pm 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6455
Location: Ottawa
Sarah388-Two things come to mind.
1. That all employees have the right to be safe while at work. Each workplace should have a Health and Safety Committee. Perhaps you could speak with them?
See http://www.labour.gov.on.ca/english/hs/ ... hp#covered

2. The Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities has an Accessibility Plan

Quote:
The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) sets out the roadmap to make Ontario accessible by 2025. Under this act, accessibility standards are being developed and implemented to break down barriers in key areas of everyday life.

and
Quote:
The ministry committed to assess its policies, programs, practices, services, acts and regulations to identify, remove or prevent barriers to persons with disabilities. This section summarizes our accomplishments.

See http://www.tcu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/ac ... tcu/#Intro

Many workplace setting now have scentfree workplaces due to environmental allergies and sensativities. I fail to see how you can not be afforded an allergen-free work/study place. The argument that "we don't have any students in the school with food allergies and I am an adult so why should the teachers limit themselves for no reason. " Makes me mad because, that is so insensitive! I would hate for my child to be taught by those!

Re: Segregation. Could they put all the children in wheelchairs in a different room during gym? Much is learned during the informal period called lunch. While the teachers may be on break, make no mistake, the students are learning. This is where they learn group dynamics, problem solving and so much more. Forced segregation, ei the only way you are safe should not be tolerated. Voluntary segregation, for those who want to bring in banned items, now that's another story.

_________________
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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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2011 10:38 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 11:00 am
Posts: 1117
There is a school here with a "No Fish" sign on the staff room door and inside the staff room. It is non-negotiable as the staff member has had multiple anaphylactic reactions.

_________________
me: allergic to crustaceans plus environmental
teenager: allergic to hazelnuts, some other foods and environmental


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 Post subject: Re: Allergy rant
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2011 10:41 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 11:00 am
Posts: 1117
The school where I work is supposed to be scent-free but it is not enforced. When students have broken the rule and sprayed in the hallway I have told the admin but don't always get action :verymad so if it is bad I just leave the building and then call them from outside and tell them I'll see them in a couple of hours. :banana Don't panic: I rarely supervise students and if I do they are more responsible than I am :rofl

_________________
me: allergic to crustaceans plus environmental
teenager: allergic to hazelnuts, some other foods and environmental


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