Me­gan’s par­ents bid to raise al­lergy aware­ness

Accrington Observer - - FESTIVE FUN -

THE par­ents of a teenager who died af­ter hav­ing an al­ler­gic re­ac­tion to a take­away meal have spo­ken out to en­cour­age busi­nesses to be al­lergy aware.

Adam and Gemma Lee’s daugh­ter Me­gan was 15 when she suf­fered a fa­tal asthma at­tack af­ter eat­ing a meal which con­tained peanuts.

Now the cou­ple, from Oswaldtwistle, have made a film to urge busi­nesses to have the ‘right at­ti­tude to al­ler­gens’.

They hope the video, which fea­tures trea­sured pho­tos and video of the Oswaldtwistle school­girl grow­ing up, will help stop an­other fam­ily go­ing through the same or­deal they have.

Gemma said: “We can’t change our story as much as we would love to. But what we can do is help oth­ers by stop­ping this story hap­pen­ing to some­one else’s fam­ily.”

Adam said: “If busi­nesses aren’t 100 per cent sure about the in­gre­di­ents in their prod­ucts then they must not sup­ply that food to their cus­tomers. It’s bet­ter to be safe than sorry. We hope that by mak­ing this video with Trad­ing Stan­dards we will make busi­ness own­ers and their staff think about their ac­tions. No-one wants an­other tragedy to hap­pen.”

Dr Sak­thi Karunanithi, direc­tor of pub­lic health for Lan­cashire County Coun­cil, said food al­ler­gies are a ‘se­ri­ous and grow­ing pub­lic health is­sue’.

He said: “We want to reach as many peo­ple as pos­si­ble with the mes­sage be­hind this cam­paign, and hope the video will help pre­vent an­other tragedy from hap­pen­ing.”

Last month two men were jailed for a to­tal of five years af­ter be­ing found guilty of un­law­fully killing St Christo­pher’s High school pupil Me­gan.

Hyn­d­burn coun­cil’s food and safety team have or­gan­ised more free al­ler­gen aware­ness work­shops for lo­cal busi­nesses in the New Year.

The in­ter­ac­tive ses­sions will be held on Jan­uary 29 and 31 at Scait­cliffe House in Ac­cring­ton with more work­shops held ev­ery month through­out 2019.

Coun­cil­lor Paul Cox, cabi­net mem­ber for en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues, said: “Busi­ness own­ers must make sure that they make in­for­ma­tion about food in­gre­di­ents avail­able to con­sumers, and to make sure con­sumers with al­ler­gies are pro­tected from the po­ten­tially fa­tal con­se­quences of ana­phy­lac­tic shock.”

For more in­for­ma­tion call 01254 388111 or visit www.food.gov.uk/ busi­ness-guid­ance/ al­ler­gen-guid­ance-forindus­try.

Me­gan Lee’s par­ents Adam and Gemma

Me­gan Lee

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