Victoria Regional Transit Commission votes to keep existing pets on buses policy

Yesterday, after presentations from 3 delegations and a thorough report presented by one of the Commission members on the topic of whether or not to allow dogs on leashes on buses a decision was made. That decision was to keep the existing policy wherein working dogs are allowed on buses at all times, however other pets are only allowed on buses when in carriers.

This was a very interesting meeting to be present for as we heard about the research they had done, the surprising response to their survey that was posted in the fall and more about what other cities have as policies around pets.

The survey asked questions around how often you use transit on a weekly basis, how would this change if dogs on leash were allowed on buses and so on.

Over 50% of the public who responded to the survey said they did NO to a policy change which would allow dogs on leashes on buses. A little over a third said YES to allowing them and 10% said Sometimes. The response was even more overwhelming with Transit Operators with well over half of them saying NO to the idea of a policy change.

In both my research and that of the Commission, it was clear that some transit Commissions across Canada have not opened up discussions to the public on the matter. I would like to thank the Victoria Regional Transit Commission as well as Vancouver for opening up this topic to the public, as we all have a right to speak up when it is a matter of public safety. They are going above and beyond to ensure that they make an educated decision and incorporate the public’s opinions in their decision. With surveys, presence on various social media platforms asking these important questions, accepting letters and emails and phone calls on the topic.

They have agreed to keep the policy at this time, however they may reconsider once Vancouver has made their decision about their own Transit Policies.

Watch the Video Clips from Chek News and CTV News to learn more:

No leash dogs allowed on Greater Victoria buses – Chek News

No pups on public transit, unless in a carrier – CTV News

Food Allergies and Anaphylaxis- No Joke

Many of you know that Severe food allergies and Anaphylaxis are no joke. There are still many people out there that do not realize how serious and life-threatening a food that may seem so innocent, like a peanut can be. We need to raise awareness.

Below is yet another sad story of what happens when us severely allergic people ingest these foods and a reminder of how important it is to take every possible precaution possible. When your life is on the line. Be as safe as you can be.

Amy’s nut allergy devastates family and friends

These stories need to be shared. We need to raise awareness that food allergies are no joke.

 

MARK YOUR CALENDARS! The Allergy Fix – Airing February 27th, 2014 7pm

TITLE_TheAllergyFix

If you ask yourself the same questions I do about why we hear about food allergies more these days, how might we be able to treat them and advances in science to date, I highly recommend you watch “The Allergy Fix”, a documentary by Dream Film airing on CBC’s The Nature of Things.

I will be tuning in on Thursday February 27, 2014 at 7pm (7:30 NL). Will you?

Here are a few links that might be of interest to you as well as the promo flyer:

Dream Film – The Allergy Fix

DEBUT: The Allergy Fix – David Suzuki’s The Nature of Things

VIDEO TRAILER for The Allergy Fix

TheAllergyFix

Denied the right to carry an inhaler on their person.

If your child is in school and has asthma, are they allowed to carry their inhaler on their person at all times? When I was in elementary school and high school in Quebec, I was. There were never any questions asked…

If you have not yet heard the story of a young Ontario boy who lost his life Oct. 9th, 2012 due to a severe asthma attack, you need to read this story. I am still shocked that some schools wouldn’t allow youth with asthma and prescribed inhalers to carry them at all times. Ryan’s mother, Sandra Gibbons is taking a stand and wants to ensure what happened to her son does not happen to another child.

Read here: Ontario Mom Urges Schools to let Asthmatic Kids Carry Puffers

 

“Defining allergy fact from fiction”

I’ve been busy lately, and am trying to organize my routine, so I can still have time to post and share interesting articles and research I come across with you, my readers.

Nowadays, there is so much information on the internet that it can often feel like you need to sift through fact and fiction or myth and reality. I always say to go with what you hear straight from a board-certified allergist and/or physician. Who knows what the real source is on the internet. I know if I have questions, whether it be about contact skin reactions, food reactions, potential allergic reactions to medications, I go to my allergist, and if he’s not available, then I’ll run it by my physician. And then, once they’ve diagnosed, or explained it to me, yes, I may do an internet search to see if others are living with the same challenges, because it’s nice to not feel alone.

I hope the following article will help you see some fact on a few topics you or perhaps someone you know believed, and in the end is fiction.

Defining allergy fact from fiction” – Press Release from American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology

What was the biggest “Ah ha!” of this article, that you perhaps wish your friends or family read, so they would see that it is “just a myth”.

For me it is hands down #5; “I’m Allergic to Cats and Dogs, but Can Have a Hypoallergenic Breed”. So many people say “oh, it’s a poodle, you won’t be allergic”… actually, yes, I am.

In the News: Oral Immunotherapy Experimental Trials

A long article with the NY times that is definitely worth the read! Dr. Kari Nadeau and her oral immunotherapy treatment trials. What an inspiring story of a dedicated person who is there for her patients 24/7. Article discusses different patients who have allergies and went through with food challenges and the trials.

“Nadeau stresses that oral immunotherapy is still experimental. Her patients are not cured; they are desensitized enough that they can tolerate their former allergens. The reason that she doesn’t call it a cure is that the child must continue to eat a maintenance dose of the food every day to avoid regaining the allergy. She often explains to her patients, “If you get off it for three days, you may become sensitive again.” An egg-allergy trial found that when patients were taken off the maintenance dose for a month, roughly 60 percent regained the allergy (and there was no way to predict who those patients would be).”

– NY Times

Can a Radical New Treatment Save Children With Severe Food Allergies?

What are your thoughts on these trials? Have your or your child ever had food challenges for any foods you are allergic to?

Great news for Canadians eating out with Food Allergies

Eating out for all of us with food allergies is often scary or worrisome. Even if you have a restaurant you trust as the staff may change, or food ingredients might change. Eating out means trusting someone else with your food. Some chefs and kitchen managers are aware and more understanding than others when it comes to food allergies. Perhaps they have a child or a relative with severe, life-threatening food allergies.

If you haven’t yet seen the following article in the news, I’d recommend having a read. The article discusses a recent guide that was created in collaboration with Anaphylaxis Canada and The Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association for Canadian restaurateurs.

Click on the following link to the article:
Guide aims to help Canadian restaurateurs better understand food allergies                         –  Lauren La Rose, The Canadian Press