Like so many who fight for the rights of those with food allergies and food-related disease, Mary C. Vargas found her calling when her youngest son was diagnosed with food allergies and celiac disease. Unlike most of us, Mary also is a founding partner with Stein & Vargas LLP, a civil rights law firm committed to the principle that all people have full and equal access to all parts of American society.
Attorney Mary Vargas is making history in the food and beverage industry by giving a voice to people who aren’t being heard, such as a college student who could never afford a $685-an-hour attorney to speak for them. She advocates for people living with food allergies, celiac disease, and non-celiac gluten sensitivities.
Many individuals with disabilities use service dog to help with daily living activities like pulling a wheelchair, pushing elevator buttons, retrieving medication or phones and detecting the presence of an allergen. Understand what you need to know about accommodating service animals at events.
Some attendees may need to bring another person — Personal Care Assistant — with them to your events to help them participate fully — do you have a policy for that?
Something as simple as rotator cuff surgery was enough to open my eyes on how different accessibility looks when you have a disability, even if it’s just temporary.
If you have to manage a food allergy or intolerance, traveling abroad or attending a business meeting or family picnic can be a minefield to navigate your allergy. From communicating your allergy in another language to knowing how that country, region or chef uses the food in their cuisine makes the already challenging situation even more difficult. Peanuts, for example, are used in many restaurants and street food stalls in Thailand. Often, the nuts are ground down to use as a garnish, meaning it is impossible to guarantee meals prepared nearby are entirely nut free. Mustard, an ancient flavor which…
By now, many are aware of some of the difficulties those with dietary restrictions face on a daily basis. Those with food allergies and intolerances not only face an intolerance to some foods and ingredients, but face intolerance by others for their invisible disability.
We know what disabilities are, right? If anyone asked, we would be able to chat intelligently about basic difficulties faced by those with disabilities, such as access, accommodations, bullying, and legal protections. What about invisible disabilities? The Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) defined a disability as any individual with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. The 2008 extension of the Act was written to include those with allergies, including food allergies. It was updated to better recognize invisible disabilities. Invisible disabilities, also called hidden disabilities, as the term suggests, are…