Elijah’s Law is legislation that implements food allergy and anaphylaxis education, policies and emergency action plans for early childhood care settings. As part of the legislation, daycares are required to implement guidelines for identifying and preventing anaphylaxis. This includes training, communication and strategies to reduce exposure to food allergens.
Several states have passed Elijah’s Law. Other states are considering it. We encourage you to get involved and urge your state lawmakers to pass Elijah’s Law and/or introduce it into the state legislature.
Virginia Becomes Third State to Enact Elijah’s Law to Protect Food Allergy Kids
Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin this week signed Elijah’s Law, a measure requiring early childhood care providers in the state to have food allergy policies in place.
The legislation is named after 3-year-old Elijah-Alavi Silvera. Elijah passed away in 2017 after a severe food-allergic reaction at his daycare in New York City. Read about Elijah in this exclusive Q&A interview with his father, Thomas Silvera.
Virginia joins New York State and Illinois as states with Elijah’s Law on the books. California and Pennsylvania have bills under consideration in their state houses.
Virginia’s Elijah’s Law requires early childhood care facilities to enact policies for storing and administering epinephrine. Epinephrine is the first-line treatment for anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction.
Specifically, Virginia’s law requires the facility to have…
- stock epinephrine on site;
- at least one trained staff member trained to administer epinephrine in an emergency;
- at least one trained staff member to be on site at all times.
Approximately 20 million Americans are living with food allergies. Many of them are at risk for anaphylaxis, which causes about 1,500 deaths per year. One in 13 children is diagnosed with a food allergy – that’s roughly two in every classroom. Infants and toddlers are at high risk. The rate of anaphylaxis is higher in children ages 0-4 than in any other age group.
In addition, severe allergies to insect venom, certain medications and latex can trigger anaphylaxis and require epinephrine as treatment.
Allergy & Asthma Network is encouraged by state actions to improve food allergy policies at schools and daycares.
We need your help to get Elijah’s Law passed in California and Pennsylvania. Join our efforts – click on the link below to contact your state representatives. Urge them to pass Elijah’s Law.