Posted on Tue 16 May 2017 at 09:24 by Lucy Gill
‘Hey everyone! So, as promised in my first manifesto, I have been working this year to ‘ensure that you are equipped to campaign and speak out on matters that matter to you!’ I made £10,000 available for campaigns and we’ve already seen incredible things happen with it. This week I’m thrilled to share the latest student led campaign and I’m incredibly proud of this student for speaking out.
Here is an insightful and thought provoking blog from Theology student Hannah who has worked incredibly hard to make Allergy Awareness Week be recognised on campus.
All this week, Old Joe will be orange (for Anaphylaxis) and Hannah and I will be sharing information around allergy awareness so you can learn much more about this important issue.
Have a read of what Hannah has to say here:
"We all have our quirks when it comes to food. Some people avoid certain foods because they don’t like how they taste, or because they have specific religious dietary requirements. Some people choose what to eat based on ethics, or in order to gain or lose weight. And then there are people like me who can’t eat something because it might kill them.
Food allergies affect over 1-2% of adults. Currently, food allergies are classed as a dietary requirement, not a disability. This disregards how serious they can be. If I accidentally or unknowingly eat something I’m allergic to, I can’t forget about my mistake and move on. I don’t get cheat days. For me, it’s a matter of life and death. I can’t go to a restaurant and order what I want without needing to have a long conversation with the chef first. I can’t pick up a product from a supermarket shelf without first examining the small print under ingredients. On more occasions that I can count I have had to get off a bus, leave my seat in the library, and even walk out of a lecture - just because somebody started eating something that I was allergic to. I have been in hospital in critical condition with Anaphylactic shock due to false labelling. Legislation in the UK means that labelling of food products must meet a required legal standard, and in recent years there has been a significant increase in the number of free-from products available. But there’s so much more that we could be doing to accommodate those with allergies, starting with awareness.
If 2% of adults in the UK suffer from food allergies and the NUS represents 7 million students in the UK, it means that there are 140,000 of us students whose daily lives are governed by our allergies, and that’s before we even enter the territory of food intolerances, which are far more common.
This Allergy Awareness Week take the time to research Anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is a severe and potentially life-threatening allergic reaction affecting more than one body system such as the airways, heart, circulation, gut and skin. Tragically, over 200 people will die from Anaphylaxis each year - from fatal reactions, false labelling, not carrying their Epipens and general lack of awareness. Please research into Anaphylaxis and how you can influence, affect and save someone’s life."
Find out more about Anaphylaxis right here: https://www.anaphylaxis.org.uk/
If you’d like to run your own campaign, check out the info here.