School Canteens and Gluten Free

tonight is our school disco and usually i would give the kids dinner before we go, but we are going to a playdate instead, so i rang the school canteen to ask what GF options they would have for the night.

they do usually have GF bread so she offered a sandwich and i explained that rora would most likely not be happy eating a sandwich when everyone else is eating party pies and sausage rolls.

i offered to bring some sausage rolls and have them heat them for us - no, they can't heat anything not from their kitchen due to health & safety regs.

so then i asked if next year (when she is actaully a student there instead of a younger sibling) they would be able to stock the GF sausage rolls and was told it was a decision for the canteen committee. 'hmmm' i said 'that's good because i was planning on joining the committee to make sure that there would be lots of safe gf options' she sounded VERY dubious about that idea ;)

then she said it wasn't worth keeping them just for 1 or 2 children. i explained they were frozen. she said that it was a space issue in the freezer

at this point i just said 'hmmmmmmmmmmmm' very non-committedly and gave up.

next year I will definitely have more to say about it. i know from research at work that discriminating against people with special food needs like that is discrimination under the disability discrimination act. (because the definition of discrimination is very broad under the act and a body part that doesn't do what it is supposed to is considered a disability. yes, i work in the disability field, so i don't consider coeliac disease a disability normally, but if they are going to discriminate against my child i will damn well use every bit of legislation there is!!)

there has already been a case fought and won on that premise and i am not going to let rora be discriminated against for the next 6 years, she had better think again.... !!!

what does your canteen have in the way of gluten free options?


mummymadesigns said...
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Karen TW said...

rora likes the bayview sausage rolls, chicken nuggets and lamingtons :)

Anonymous said...

Good for you!

Anonymous said...

That's great!! I hope you can turn it around for your school as there are probably other parents having the same issues. Good luck with it all.

Anonymous said...

good for you! its not hard for canteens to offer alternatives for kids with food allergies. Our menus are always planed to offer selections to suit most allergy types and encourages parents to come in and check out ingredients and offer suggestions.

Karen TW said...

i just wanted to post that i wasn't quite right about the court case - it didn't go to court but was settled outside of court. but was definitely fought under the DDA

http://www.hreoc.gov.au/complaints_information/register/dda/pdf/dda_jun03_jan04.pdf search for coeliac or look on the bottom of page 11