Excerpt from: Law Office of Matthew Stoloff (click for full article)
Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, a food allergy may constitute a disability. When a person has an allergy or autoimmune response to certain food, it can affect “the major life activity of eating and the major bodily functions of the immune, digestive, bowel, and neurological systems.”
When students with celiac disease were unable to find gluten-free meal options at any of the dining facilities at their private university, Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, they filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Justice.
Recently, the U.S. Department of Justice and Lesley University entered into a Settlement Agreement requiring that Lesley University provide gluten-free and allergen-free food options in its dining halls.
In the settlement agreement, Lesley University acknowledges that it is a public accommodation and must “make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures, when the modifications are necessary to afford goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations to individuals with disabilities…”