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From Bristol, Rhode Island, USA:

My eight year old son was recently told that he is not allowed to test his blood sugar while on the school bus. I called the bus company to inform them that he normally wouldn't do so unless he felt he was high or low (and in fact he was very low when he tested), but they told me it was against their policy to allow children with diabetes to test while on the bus. I'm not exactly sure, but isn't this discrimination? His school his really good about letting him test whenever he feels the need to do so, but I was shocked by the bus company's insistence (not to mention sheer ignorance!). The person I spoke with thought that other kids could actually get diabetes from his lancet! Is this covered under the ADA? If so, can anyone point me to the actual text?


No, I do not think that the bus company is acting in the proper manner. Unfortunately, you are dealing with ignorance. You may be the first person to have raised this issue with them. If your child has a low sugar and needs to test, I would consider this an emergency. I'm sure they would not want emergency intervention withheld.

I would continue to pursue this with the bus company. You may want to pursue this with the school or school district. Most companies in the employ of the school district have to act within the bounds of the school district's policy on a matter. I would also contact your local American Diabetes Association or Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation as these organizations may have advocacy groups in your area. They could really get on the band wagon and give this bus company a bad name.

Finally, it may be a civil liberty issue. You may even have to have legal counsel. Good luck. The welfare of your child is certainly worth fighting for.


Additional comments from David S. Holtzman, Esq.:

I do not believe this is an ADA issue. The bus company is under contract to the school district. I would seek a meeting with the school principal or the school district's supervisor of pupil transportation. If you get no satisfaction from these folks, go to the school superintendent or the school board.


Original posting 26 Mar 2002
Posted to School and Daycare


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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:32
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