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Diabetes Docket: Legal Advocacy eNews

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Have Diabetes, Will Travel


Are you planning a summer vacation that involves flying out of U.S. airports? Getting through airport security with diabetes can be a pain, but the Association has resources to help you. Learn how to prepare yourself and your family to make it a little easier, safer and more pleasant for all.

Since the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) was created in 2001, the Association has fought for people with diabetes. We are active in the civil rights and disabilities coalition that pushes TSA to make changes and provides feedback to TSA about problems. If you think you have been treated unfairly by TSA, please call 1-800-DIABETES and ask how you can speak with a Legal Advocate. We can help you with your individual problem. However, you will also be helping all people with diabetes. Travelers who share their stories enable us to ask for specific changes to TSA policies and practices that help everyone with diabetes be treated more fairly.

Check out what we have been doing to raise awareness about the rights of travelers with diabetes. On May 8, we held a Twitter chat on this topic. If you missed it, you can read our interactive #Dtravel transcript. We also published a Q&A with the Joslin Center about TSA in Diabetes Forecast. Finally, try to visit before traveling. You’ll find answers to more questions here, and you can also print out a fact sheet in case you encounter problems while going through security.

New and Noteworthy

Kids at School

Alabama, Kentucky and Tennessee Join Ranks of States Keeping Students With Diabetes Safe at School
This spring, students with diabetes in three states are safer because of new laws requiring that schools take certain steps to provide diabetes care.

In Kentucky, House Bill 98 allows school staff to volunteer to be trained to assist children with diabetes with insulin administration (school staff were already allowed by law to assist with glucagon administration). In addition, the bill allows children, if they are capable to do so, to self-manage their diabetes while at school.

In Tennessee, a similar bill, Senate Bill 1445, allows school staff to be trained to administer insulin to students with diabetes. Like Kentucky, Tennessee already permitted school staff to assist with glucagon administration and allowed capable students to take care of their own diabetes at school.

In Alabama, Senate Bill 57 authorizes school staff to be trained to administer insulin and glucagon to students with diabetes when a school nurse is not present. The new law also ends the practice in some Alabama school districts of requiring children with diabetes to transfer to schools away from family and friends, simply because they have diabetes.

Unsure what laws apply in your state or what your child’s rights are to diabetes care in school? Contact us (1-800-DIABETES) to learn more and get help from a Legal Advocate.

Parents Corner

field trip

Keeping Your Child Safe on a School Field Trip
Is your child’s school ready to handle diabetes on field trips? All too often field trips are the forgotten part of the school plan, and only when the permission slip is sent home does the real scramble begin. What can you do?

For starters, be sure to address care during field trips in your child’s section 504 plan. There should always be someone trained in diabetes care available when your child is in the school building or participating in any school-sponsored activity. What if you just learned of a field trip? Reach out to the school nurse or your child’s teacher to put in place a plan for that trip, and then ask the school to convene the 504 team to address future trips. Remember that some longer trips may need more detailed planning, so it’s best to plan in advance.

Read more about how to make your child’s field trip experiences happy ones and find tips from other parents about planning for field trips.

Diabetes on the Job


Have you had trouble taking breaks at work when you need to check your blood glucose, take medication or eat? Have you been disciplined for arriving late to work because of your diabetes? Maybe you’ve been told you can’t take time off for a doctor’s appointment. These are examples of how diabetes can interfere with your job—but you have rights that can help.

Reasonable accommodations” are changes that help people with disabilities compete for a wide range of jobs, excel in their work and be treated fairly. For workers with diabetes, this could mean your employer makes minor changes to workplace rules to allow you to take breaks as needed. Or it could mean providing you a stool to sit down if you have pain or nerve damage. Most accommodations for people with diabetes can be provided at little or no cost to their employers.

Do you need changes at work to help you manage your diabetes and perform the job? Are you unsure what accommodations are possible? We have tools that can help. Contact us (1-800-DIABETES) to talk to a Legal Advocate.

How to Get Help

Everyone who has diabetes deserves to be treated fairly at work, at school and in other parts of daily life. But that does not always happen. Sometimes people who have diabetes are treated unfairly—just because of diabetes.

If something doesn’t feel right, it might not be legal. There are federal laws that protect against diabetes discrimination. Call us at 1-800-DIABETES (342-2383) for help.

Our legal advocates can offer free help and guidance for your problem.

Spread the Word!

Help us spread the word about the American Diabetes Association's legal advocacy services. Simply copy and paste these Facebook and Twitter posts to share with your personal social media networks.


Experiencing discrimination because of #diabetes? The @AmDiabetesAssn can help. Call 1-800-DIABETES today!


Should people with diabetes be allowed to join the military? Can daycare centers turn away a child with diabetes? Must you reveal your diabetes to a potential employer? Can you drive a truck if you use insulin? Join the conversation!

Become a Diabetes Advocate


Become a Diabetes Advocate today to help Stop Diabetes®! Join us as we raise our voices to ask national and state leaders to fund vital diabetes research and programs, prevent diabetes, improve health care and protect the rights of all people living with diabetes. Make your voice heard! Visit us at to learn more and sign up today.

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The American Diabetes Association's Legal Advocacy activities are supported by a grant from Novo Nordisk.

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