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Kids with allergies ask rights panel for lunch inspections (Nanny state - Ontario)
The National Post ^ | Friday, December 07, 2007 | Chris Wattie

Posted on 12/10/2007 12:06:40 PM PST by fanfan

TORONTO -- A group of Toronto-area children is asking the Ontario Human Rights Commission to force their school to launch mandatory lunch-bag inspections to screen out foods to which they have severe allergies, a case which could make all Ontario schools do the same.

The six children, ranging in age from six to 11, contend that the local school board discriminated against them when it shut down a voluntary lunch screening program at St. Stephen's Catholic Elementary School, in Woodbridge, Ont., aimed at keeping peanuts, egg products or other potential allergy-inducing foods off school grounds entirely.

Maurice Brenner, a human-rights expert who is helping the children pursue their case, said their allergies are potentially life-threatening and qualify as disabilities under Ontario human rights law. And he said that the school's lunch program, which was ended by the York Catholic District School Board more than a year ago, was necessary for the children's safety.

"Nothing is too much when we're talking about kids' safety," he said. "It's not off the wall by any stretch of the imagination. What if your kids had these allergies: would it be off the wall then? I don't think so."

Mr. Brenner said the voluntary program at the school ran for nearly six years, with parents pinning a note to lunch bags listing the contents and teachers assigned to monitor lunch hour checking that none of the children's lunches contained peanut or egg products, such as mayonnaise. If a banned substance was found in a child's lunch, a note would be sent home with them advising their parents of the fact.

But the board ended the inspection program at the end of the 2005-06 school year, which Mr. Brenner said "created total chaos."

"These kids are frankly frightened -- they're scared to go to school," he said.

Chris Cable, a spokeswoman for the York Catholic District School Board, said the program was ended because it was out of line with practices in the other schools in the region. "It was a question of bringing that school into line with the practices at our other schools," she said. "As a school board we're required to be consistent."

The children, and their parents, are currently in mediation with the board in an attempt to avoid a full hearing before a provincial human rights tribunal, but Mr. Brenner said talks are stalled over lunchbag inspections.

Ms. Cable said if a tribunal were to rule in favour of the children, "it could force every school in the province to do this."

She said St. Stephen's already has a program to keep peanuts and other allergens out of students' lunches and snacks, including reminding parents to leave potentially harmful foods out of lunch boxes and monitoring foods brought in for special celebrations.

"This school is a model for food allergy policies," she said.

Mr. Brenner said the children and their parents are not trying to make the lunch inspection program provincial law, just to get it brought back to their school.

"Every school should be able to come up with its own solution," he said. "If this becomes law, it's because the school board pushed it right to the bitter end."

He said the children's concerns need to be taken seriously. "These are deadly allergies: if these kids come into contact with these substances they can die."

The Woodbridge children are to hold a news conference on Monday, timed to coincide with International Human Rights Day, to promote their case against the school board.

The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology estimates that from two to four per cent of children and one to two per cent of adults have allergic reactions to food, most commonly peanuts, tree nuts, shellfish, fish, milk, egg, wheat, soy and sesame.


TOPICS: Canada; Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: canada; foodallergy; foodnazis; foryourowngood; nannystate; peanuts; schoollunch
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This is making me sick.
1 posted on 12/10/2007 12:06:41 PM PST by fanfan
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To: GMMAC; Clive; exg; kanawa; conniew; backhoe; -YYZ-; Former Proud Canadian; Squawk 8888; ...

2 posted on 12/10/2007 12:07:29 PM PST by fanfan ("We don't start fights my friends, but we finish them, and never leave until our work is done."PMSH)
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To: fanfan

So they need to ban:
Peanuts
Nuts
Eggs
Wheat
Gluten
MSG
etc
etc
etc


3 posted on 12/10/2007 12:08:25 PM PST by Kozak (Anti Shahada: There is no god named Allah, and Muhammed is a false prophet)
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To: fanfan

The screening should be for kids unfit for being in public


4 posted on 12/10/2007 12:08:26 PM PST by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 . Moveon is not us...... Moveon is the enemy)
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To: fanfan
Why stop at kids with allergies...

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." - Manuel II Palelologus

5 posted on 12/10/2007 12:08:31 PM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: fanfan

This is exactly the kind of thinking Huckabee will be bringing to the WH.


6 posted on 12/10/2007 12:09:16 PM PST by samtheman
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To: fanfan

When I was growing up (in the 80s) the kids with severe allergies ate in a different lunch area altogether.

Being a parent, why risk it? Just have your kid eat somewhere other than the main cafeteria and you’re good to go.


7 posted on 12/10/2007 12:10:07 PM PST by Slapshot68
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To: fanfan

Yeah its nuts.. and if its starting in Canada, you can bet its coming here soon.

We worry about shootings, and guns in schools.. but who knew Little Johnny would become a deadly threat with a peanut in his pocket.. lol

I’m half amazed kids have not tried to sneak in peanuts into schools these days for whatever reason.


8 posted on 12/10/2007 12:10:37 PM PST by eXe (Si vis pacem, para bellum)
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To: bert
The screening should be for kids unfit for being in public

We truly have a situation where the majority has to alter their ways in order to satisfy a tiny minority of the population. At a certain point, I think the public should be able to say:

"Stay home. Homeschool your kids. Make changes in your own life to deal with your own problems. Over here, the rest of us are going to go about our business."

9 posted on 12/10/2007 12:12:11 PM PST by ClearCase_guy (The broken wall, the burning roof and tower. And Agamemnon dead.)
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To: Kozak

no pork or ham due to muslim kids.


10 posted on 12/10/2007 12:14:00 PM PST by edcoil (Reality doesn't say much - doesn't need too)
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To: fanfan

Well, I would have to pull my kids out of school because the only kind of sandwich they WANT to bring is a PB&J.

Seriously, how did we survive all these years without the Allery Police dictating what we can have in our lunchboxes?

Please.


11 posted on 12/10/2007 12:15:21 PM PST by Shelayne (...)
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To: ClearCase_guy
A group of Toronto-area children is asking the Ontario Human Rights Commission to force their school to launch mandatory lunch-bag inspections

Why, that's nothing to sneeze at.

12 posted on 12/10/2007 12:15:52 PM PST by Puppage (You may disagree with what I have to say, but I shall defend to your death my right to say it)
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To: fanfan

Our 1 year old has a potentially deadly peanut allergy, but this seems way beyond what is necessary. By the time kids are in school, they should be able to know what not to eat if they have one of these allergies.


13 posted on 12/10/2007 12:16:02 PM PST by TexasGunLover ("Either you're with us or you're with the terrorists."-- President George W. Bush)
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To: fanfan
The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology estimates that from two to four per cent of children and one to two per cent of adults have allergic reactions to food, most commonly peanuts, tree nuts, shellfish, fish, milk, egg, wheat, soy and sesame.

I have allergic reactions to a number of foods, but the reactions I have are minor.

I have to imagine that despite there being more and more people with such allergies, that those with life threatening allergies are still rare, and among those most would still need to ingest a reasonable amount of the food to which they are allergic before they would have a serious reaction.

Are they worried about some kid who should know better eating some other kid's food and having a reaction? Can someone provide some insight about what exactly they are concerned about?

14 posted on 12/10/2007 12:16:05 PM PST by untrained skeptic
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To: bert

This leads to the tyranny of the minority. Life does not guarantee a planet free of all risk. Why stop at the school? What about businesses and towns, products in stores, etc. etc.


15 posted on 12/10/2007 12:16:08 PM PST by Truth29
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To: Slapshot68
Being a parent, why risk it? Just have your kid eat somewhere other than the main cafeteria and you’re good to go.

Because that makes too much sense. If you have special needs kids to look out for, it's easier to just encroach on the freedoms of others to eat what they want, rather than to make special accomodations for those with needs.

Suffering must be shared equally. One size must fit all.
Didn't you read the manual for liberalism??
16 posted on 12/10/2007 12:17:28 PM PST by bamahead (Few men desire liberty; The majority are satisfied with a just master. -- Sallust)
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To: fanfan

there should be a new theory called Survival of the Weakest.


17 posted on 12/10/2007 12:18:13 PM PST by ari-freedom (Happy Chanuka! Itís just another ordinary miracle today.)
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To: fanfan
I ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches nearly every day in grade school. (Frankly, I loved it.)

I’m not aware of any children harmed during that eight years.

If these children are so brittle they can’t be exposed to normal food products, they should eat in a separate area.

It is preposterous what is taking place these days, with the PC crowd run amuk.

Folks, some people have a light sensitivity. Better find some way to block out the sun quick.

18 posted on 12/10/2007 12:18:18 PM PST by DoughtyOne (California, where the death penalty is reserved for wholesome values. SB 777)
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To: traviskicks

ping.


19 posted on 12/10/2007 12:18:48 PM PST by bamahead (Few men desire liberty; The majority are satisfied with a just master. -- Sallust)
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To: Kozak

they also need to ban meat because it’s so cruel and causes global warming.


20 posted on 12/10/2007 12:19:01 PM PST by ari-freedom (Happy Chanuka! Itís just another ordinary miracle today.)
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