Doctor Says ‘Food Bullying’ At School Could Be Fatal
By Michelle Durham
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Bullying has been a topic of conversation among students, parents and school administrators for sometime, but there is another form of intimidation being used at school and the consequences of this type bullying could be fatal.
Imagine your son or daughter has a fatal food allergy and there is a student in their classroom that threatens to bring that item in or shows them the item they are so allergic to at school — it’s called “food bullying” and CEO of Council for Relationships Dr. Stephen Treat has seen it happen.
“I’ve had two or three cases like this actually,” Dr. Treat said. “There were very severe allergies and the families had to notify the staff, teachers, school nurse and the class had to be notified.”
And Dr. Treat says those essential notifications make the child vulnerable to be targeted and what consequences are appropriate for the bully?
“In the most serious cases, it’s important that the person who is doing the bullying is really boundaried. Teacher, their family, the parents really take it seriously.”
Dr. Treat says every parent can help by talking with their child about food allergies and how serious they are and encouraging them to support the child in their class that has one and to also urge them to report any bullying of this kind they see.