FARE is pleased to report that New Jersey has become the latest state to strengthen its law regarding stock epinephrine in schools. On Feb. 5, Gov. Chris Christie signed A 304/S 801, which now requires that schools maintain a supply of epinephrine auto-injectors and amends an existing law, which already allowed schools to obtain auto-injectors. The new law provides immunity to school employees and agents for good faith acts or omissions concerning the emergency administration of epinephrine. Physicians who provide a prescription under a standing protocol for school epinephrine are also covered by this immunity. Sponsored by Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande, the bill was supported tirelessly by food allergy advocates across the state. FARE was one of several organizations that contacted legislators and sent out action alerts to our New Jersey members, encouraging them to voice their support.
In Virginia, a new food allergy restaurant training bill has passed both chambers of the Virginia Legislature with near unanimous support. Delegate Mark Keam sponsored HB 2090, which would require the state Board of Health to include training standards that address food safety and food allergy awareness and safety in its regulations governing restaurants. The bill also requires the Commissioner of Health to provide written materials on food safety and food allergy awareness and safety for the training of restaurant personnel. The idea for this Virginia bill was brought to Keam in January 2014 by 14-year-old Claire Troy, who has food allergies (pictured above with Keam and her mother). FARE worked with advocates in that state to offer our support. As of press time, the bill is heading to the governor’s desk for signature. If signed, Virginia would join Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Michigan, which have similar laws.