Today, on August 20, 2021, Governor JB Pritzker signed Elijah’s Law, The Childhood Anaphylactic Policy Act (HB0102) into law for Illinois. A milestone for food allergy awareness, this bill mandates that childcare centers and schools establish guidelines and provide training to recognize and prevent the risk of anaphylaxis in children and young adults. Passed in New York in 2019, Illinois is the second U.S. state to turn this important piece of legislation into law.
Elijah’s Law is named after 3-year-old Elijah Silvera from New York City, a child who was given a grilled cheese sandwich at daycare despite having a known severe dairy allergy. Elijah suffered an anaphylaxis reaction and ultimately passed away soon after. This story of tragedy and heartache grew into the Elijah-Alavi Foundation created by his parents, who have championed Elijah’s Law across the U.S. to keep children in the allergy community safe and prevent avoidable tragedies like Elijah’s.
In the U.S. there are on average two children in every classroom living with a life-threatening food allergy. We call on people and organizations to come together to raise awareness for food allergies so that no family should live in fear when sending their child to a learning environment. We hope to see Elijah’s Law passed in every state across the country through the power of advocacy and awareness.