Maryland Becomes Fourth State to Enact Elijah’s Law to Protect Kids with Food Allergies

AAFA celebrates action to make child care centers safer

Washington, D.C., April 26, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) celebrates the signing of Elijah’s Law in Maryland. The legislation, passed by the Maryland House and Senate and signed by Gov. Wes Moore, enacts policies designed to protect children with food allergies in child care centers.

“We commend the state legislature for passing Elijah’s Law and taking steps to ensure uniform practices relative to food allergies in child care centers in Maryland,” said Kenneth Mendez, President and CEO of AAFA. “This law will protect children and could save lives. We’d like to thank Delegate Julie Palakovich and Gov. Moore for their leadership and support.”

Elijah’s Law is a bill named in memory of Elijah Silvera. On Nov. 3, 2017, 3-year-old Elijah died after a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis at his child care center. Elijah’s parents, Thomas Silvera and Dina Hawthorne, set out to ensure protections are in place in all child care centers. Working with their state lawmakers in New York, Elijah’s parents drafted the first Elijah’s Law. The bill ensures child care centers take steps to manage food allergies for the children in their care.

AAFA and the Elijah-Alavi Foundation (EAF), a nonprofit organization co-founded by Elijah’s parents, worked together in 2022 to release the “Child Care Policies for Food Allergy: Elijah’s Law Report for the U.S. States and Territories.”  The report looks at state and U.S. territory child care licensing regulations against 9 policy standards. The standards aim to protect children with food allergies in child care settings. The report also includes a toolkit to help advocates push for Elijah’s Law in their home state.

Maryland is the fourth state in the nation to pass Elijah’s Law, following New York, Illinois, and Virginia. The legislation is also being considered this year in legislatures in California, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, and Pennsylvania.

“We are encouraged by the momentum behind this legislation in states across the country,” said Mendez. “We urge lawmakers in the other states where this is being considered to follow Maryland’s example and pass Elijah’s Law this year.”


About AAFA

Founded in 1953, AAFA is the oldest and largest non-profit patient organization dedicated to saving lives and reducing the burden of disease for people with asthma, allergies, and related conditions through research, education, advocacy, and support. AAFA offers extensive support for individuals and families affected by asthma and allergic diseases, such as food allergies and atopic dermatitis (eczema). Through its online patient support communities, network of regional chapters, and collaborations with community-based groups, AAFA empowers patients and their families by providing practical, evidence-based information and community programs and services. AAFA is the only asthma and allergy patient advocacy group that is certified to meet the standards of excellence set by the National Health Council. For more information, visit: and


Elijah's Law signed into law in Maryland

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