State senator to propose bill requiring EpiPens be added to NYC public spaces
A bill being proposed would require EpiPens to be added to public spaces in New York City.
Fifteen-year-old Lucia Zeremba’s little brother John is severely allergic to peanuts, tree nuts and sesame. Six years ago, she saw her brother John almost die from an allergic reaction. The experience changed her life forever, Zeremba says.
“I was just lucky that my mom literally saved my brother’s life,” she says. And her mother did so with an EpiPen.
John is not alone. One in 13 children in the U.S. have a food allergy, according to the CDC. But many of them don’t keep EpiPens handy because they aren’t aware of their allergies until they have a reaction.
“The time after having a reaction and needing an EpiPen is a very short period,” explains Zeremba, “…their lives are literally at risk, and I can do something about that.”
Zaremba reached out to state Sen. Andrew Gournardes to make a change. He responded with a bill that would require large gathering venues like concert halls, sports arenas and convention centers to have EpiPens on-site, in addition to people trained to assist others on how to use them in case of emergency.
“This is something that no one had previously thought about,” says Gournardes, “…we did some research and found out that it was not currently law and we said it should be.”
The state senator says he will formally introduce the bill at the beginning of the new legislative session on Jan. 4, with hopes that it will be signed into law by June.