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June 13, 2001

Other Social Issues

Question from Canada:

I am a 15 year old who has type 1 diabetes and will be moving to the United States. I want to get a job as a truck driver, but I found out that people with type 1 diabetes are kept from obtaining a commercial license. I would like to know if this will have any chance of changing within the next few years.


There are some strange laws in the United States, unfortunately. The interstate driving laws are likely to change, but nobody could tell exactly how quickly this will happen. If you want be a truck driver but not an interstate long-haul truck driver, then there are different rules and regulations. Hopefully, this will become individualized based upon how well controlled you are, accident history, medical clearance etc.

The American Diabetes Association is lobbying very hard to have such discriminatory and archaic laws challenged and modified. ADA has already had some success with pilots and driving licenses, but there is still much work to be done. You may want to contact the American Diabetes Association government relations committee since their website could give you the latest information.

Additional comments from Dr. Larry Deeb:

You must be at least 18 to apply for commercial drivers license, and yes, the American Diabetes Association is working on commercial licenses.