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Allergy bullying might result in criminal charges

Despite ongoing efforts by parents, teachers and students, bullying is as much of a problem today as it was when you were in school. At Mark B. Arthur, PC, we know that bullying can result in a child receiving serious charges. You and other Virginia parents may benefit by understanding the potential consequences of bullying at school.

When you consider common types of bullying, you might think of children who verbally taunt other children, make threats or push them around. These behaviors are commonplace and might not often result in consequences beyond parental grounding or school suspension. However, food allergy bullying is another story. Many children – around one in 13, according to Noappetiteforbullying.com – have allergies to certain foods that can cause serious harm or threaten their lives if they are exposed to these foods. Children who do not suffer from any allergies might not realize how serious it could be if their classmates come into contact with their allergens.

Food allergy bullying results when children and even adults tease or deliberately expose those with allergies to these foods. For example, a student at your child’s school might put a dab of peanut butter on a computer keyboard that a child with peanut allergies will be using, or a parent may knowingly make a snack with a banned allergen that is intended to be shared with the class.

Your child might participate in teasing or pranks involving food allergens without realizing this is a serious issue. It may help to discuss this topic with your children so they understand that food allergies are no joke. However, as our criminal defense page explains, you may also defend your child if charges arise from a bullying prank that went too far.

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