Teen girl with rare illness wears gastrostomy tube to compete in world cycling championships

Alicia Jordan(NEW YORK) — Hannah Jordan is a cycling champion who will compete this weekend in the 2019 Hillclimb Worlds in California on a demanding course that rises more than 2,500 feet in elevation.

But the 18-year-old will race the course with something no one else in the competition has: a gastrostomy tube, or G-tube, that keeps her alive.

In a sport where aerodynamics is everything, Jordan, of Tulsa, Oklahoma, uses a specially designed race jersey to hold the G-tube monitor that pumps glucose into her body, preventing her from going into potentially life-threatening hypoglycemia.

“I’m the only person I know who is on a G-tube and competes like this,” Jordan told ABC News’ Good Morning America. “When I’m told I can’t, that makes me want to ride faster and better.”

Jordan was classified as small for her gestational age as a child and suffered extreme fatigue and dangerously low blood sugar because her body could not keep up with her brain’s need for glucose, according to her doctor, Madeleine Harbison, a pediatric endocrinology specialist at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York.

“We don’t know exactly what is different about Hannah,” said Harbison, noting that she and other doctors have not been able to pinpoint a genetic defect. “What we do know is that this is a child who without her continuous glucose infusion into her stomach becomes hypoglycemic and is essentially bedridden.”

Jordan had to be home schooled because of her medical complications and would be so fatigued that her mom had to push her in a stroller. She has had the G-tube for more than a decade.

The teen’s entire life changed nearly five years ago when she picked up an old bicycle and taught herself to ride. She discovered that she could not only ride the bike but thrived riding it, finding it fueled her energy.

“I lived my life in a hospital bed,” she said of her pre-cycling days. “I’m living my childhood now and I live every day like it’s a gift.”

When Jordan’s mom, Alicia Jordan, saw her daughter “come out swinging” on the bike, she sought out USA Cycling, the national governing body for bicycle racing, and got her daughter in a training program and under the care of expert dietitians.

“She morphed into this incredible athlete,” said Alicia Jordan. “[My husband and I] transferred our energy from keeping her alive to letting her live the best life possible.”

Jordan has gone on to compete in more than two dozen cycling races, winning gold and silver medals and setting personal records along the way.

The same condition that for so long kept her bedridden is now an asset to Jordan as a competitive cyclist in a way that has astounded medical experts, according to Harbison.

“For her, there is some difference in the way her muscle metabolizes energy that allows her to do this, especially since one of her specialties is hill climbing,” she said of Jordan. “Exercise is her fuel, essentially, that allows her to be closer to normal.”

“What it is about exercise that has woken her brain up, and how she thrives in it, is what’s so curious to me,” Harbison added. “She’s the only child I’ve seen who’s had this extreme lethargy that was improved by exercise.”

Jordan’s life has changed off the bike, too. With her improved energy she has been able to attend school and is doing an internship at Kate Farms, the maker of the plant-based formula she now uses in her G-tube.

“I call cycling my mental sanity,” she said. “It’s definitely helped me just be able to live my life and feel like a normal human being and has been a doorway to many paths.”

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency officially cleared Jordan to compete last spring at any level after ruling that her G-tube does not give her an advantage over athletes.

The Hillclimb Worlds will be Jordan’s first world championship race — her first of many, she hopes.

“I knew ever since I was 8 years old that I couldn’t just have a 9-to-5 life and I wanted to change the world, even though I was sick,” she said. “I knew I wanted to do something great, but didn’t know what it looked like until I found cycling.”

“What I love about cycling is that it doesn’t stick anyone in the box,” Jordan added. “You can do whatever you want and decide how fast you want to go and how far you want to go.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Mom of 6 says ‘hardest thing’ about breast cancer diagnosis was telling kids: ‘I could see the fear in their eyes’

(ABC/Nicolette Cain) Breast cancer patient Sarah Weimer opens up about her breast cancer journey on “The View” on Oct. 17, 2019, for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.(NEW YORK) — For Sarah Weimer, a 36-year-old mother who was diagnosed with breast cancer, the “hardest thing” wasn’t the side effects of chemotherapy but telling her six children that “mommy has breast cancer,” she told The View on Thursday.

Weimer, who is from Idaho, was diagnosed with stage-three breast cancer earlier this year. She opened up about her journey on Thursday, speaking about the warning signs that she had missed months before her diagnosis and the ongoing treatment she expects to face in the future.

The whole world felt like it had stopped, Weimer said of the moment her breast cancer diagnosis was confirmed. “No one ever wants to hear those words: ‘cancer’ or ‘you have cancer,'” she said.

“The hardest thing was to tell my kids mommy has breast cancer,” she said tearfully. “My two older ones, I could see the fear in their eyes a little bit. I could see them being scared and they knew instantly that it was serious, and that was really hard for me to stay strong in that moment. We just ended our conversation with hope and with, you know, we know where our strength comes from, and as a family, we’re going to work together.”

Summur Shaikh, a producer for The View who was successfully treated for breast cancer earlier this year, found Weimer’s story online. She said the story “stuck out” for her because they were both diagnosed at the same age and Weimer’s “positivity really inspired” her.

“I have always been a positive person, but dealing with cancer, you could easily get into a very dark place,” Weimer said on Thursday. “I knew that wasn’t how I wanted to live my life. I chose to focus on waking up and just being thankful that I have another day to be here, being thankful I have another day to be with my kids.”

As a mother of six, Weimer admitted that she didn’t prioritize her health as much as she should have.

“I first noticed [in] the beginning of this year [that] something was different,” Weimer said, referring to her early signs of breast cancer. “I thought, ‘OK, maybe it’s an infection. Maybe it’s just something minor. Maybe it’s hormonal.’ There was one day where I really looked in the mirror and realized my breasts were literally two different sizes and that’s when I decided to call the doctor.”

Weimer explained to Whoopi Goldberg, who grappled with her own health issues earlier this year, why she waited so long to see a doctor.

“As a mom, I’m just busy and life happens, and we don’t make the time to stop and take care of ourselves. We’re taking care of our kids, our house, our family, our job, and we forget to stop and say, ‘Wait a minute. Am I okay? Is anything going on with me?'”

“I didn’t take the time for myself like I should have,” she continued. “I was thinking, ‘It’s going to go away. It’s nothing serious.’ And when I realized the changes continued to get more aggressive, I just had a sinking feeling.”

With no other options, Weimer had to put her breast cancer treatment before anything else to save her life and be there for her family. She sought treatment three hours from her home at Huntsman Cancer Institute in Salt Lake City, which was founded by The View co-host Abby Huntsman’s grandfather, Jon Huntsman, who passed away from prostate cancer in 2018.

Jon Huntsman’s wife, Karen Huntsman, had designed parts of the hospital and she was seated in The View‘s audience on Thursday.

“I want to say thank you, Grandma,” Weimer said to Karen Huntsman. “Thank you for having a wonderful family because I know that the investment over at Huntsman means a lot to my family and to my life.”

In September, Weimer underwent a double mastectomy and what she thought was her last round of chemotherapy treatments. After the surgery, however, her doctors informed her that the cancer had spread and that she would have to restart chemotherapy.

“Cancer is life-threatening and it’s really important that you go to a facility that is going to be well taken care of, and they’re going to take care of your needs and have the best outcome,” Weimer said. “I really just love Huntsmans in general. The view of Salt Lake is gorgeous, so I’m just so, so grateful that I have a great place.”

After hearing of Weimer’s story, Ford Motor Company’s Warriors in Pink donated $20,000 to support her to journey to recovery.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Strokes are becoming more common in younger adults and PTSD may be a cause

utah778/iStock(NEW YORK) — By Dr. Saumya Bhutani

The incidence of stroke, a major cause of disability and death, is on the rise in young and middle-aged adults. A new study suggests that PTSD may be a contributing factor.

“There is now a large amount of evidence that stroke is on the rise in young adults aged less than 45. We are still unable to identify the cause of stroke in about half of overall stroke patients below 30 years of age. We need more studies and funding to study this population which forms the future of our country,” Dr. Rohan Arora, director of the stroke program at Long Island Jewish Forest Hills said to ABC News.

The new study, published in the journal Stroke, found that young veterans with PTSD had a 36% increased risk for stroke. They also had a 61% increased risk for transient ischemic attack (TIA), a brief, self-resolving stroke-like event that can represent a warning for future stroke.

Post-traumatic stress disorder has gained significant attention over the past few years with health concerns of those near ground-zero on 9/11, the return of veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, multiple mass shootings and increased awareness of sexual assault.

Researchers examined over 900,000 veterans with an average age of 30 for thirteen years. Almost 30% of these veterans developed PTSD. They found that those that did were more likely to experience stroke and TIA than those who did not.

“PTSD may lead to the secretion of ‘bad chemicals’ in the bloodstream that cause inflammation … causing injury to the arteries leading to clot formation,” Arora said. Clot formation is the basis of stroke.

“PTSD also worsens pre-existing high blood pressure and diabetes — important risk factors for stroke,” he added.

Compared to the veterans without PTSD, those with PTSD had higher rates of high blood pressure and diabetes, as well as other known stroke risk factors, such as irregular heart rhythms, diabetes, high cholesterol, smoking and obesity. Still, the occurrence of these conditions was low among all young veterans. They were relatively healthy.

Beyond that, the 36% and 61% increased risk was found when accounting for these factors. The fact that the relationship was strong and significant regardless of these other variables suggests that PTSD plays a unique part in the development of stroke.

“PTSD is a national public health issue,” said Lindsey Rosman, Ph.D, the lead author of the study, and assistant professor of Medicine in the division of Cardiology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

“We know that young folks are increasingly exposed to direct and vicarious trauma, whether its natural disaster, gun violence or sexual assault. These same young folks don’t have the same traditional cardiovascular risk factors for stroke we see in older people,” Rosman said.

Rosman said that the digital age exposes people to “indirect trauma.”

“Young people can develop PTSD symptoms that are severe and impairing through vicarious trauma. They are continuously exposed to videos of traumatic events that they have the ability to watch over and over again,” she said.

The veterans studied were predominantly male and white. Rosman pointed to directions of future research, “It’s very important in future studies to look at the role of sex in PTSD and stroke. Women are more likely to experience chronic stress and PTSD, but are known to have a lower stroke risk than men.” She also stated, “It’s possible other factors that we didn’t control for played a role, including sleep disturbance and migraine.”

Although the study focused on veterans, Rosman noted, “We did not assess the nature of the trauma and it’s possible that our veterans, many of whom were not in combat, experienced more than military trauma. They could have experienced sexual assault and life adversity.” Thus, she believes the findings can apply to those who have PTSD whether they are veterans or not.

“Based on this, we need to realize that there is no one-size-fits-all. We need to develop age-appropriate screening and intervention. We need to expand our view when it comes to risk factors,” she said.

“Unique mental health issues may be an important part in understanding a young person’s risk factors of developing disease.”

Dr. Saumya Bhutani is a resident in psychiatry in New York with the ABC News Medical Unit.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

My son died from positional asphyxia in a car seat. Here’s what parents need to know.

Ryne Jungling(MANDAN, N.D.) — It was a normal Thursday morning in January for new mom Rachel Jungling as she took her infant twins to day care.

Both Rachel and her husband, Ryne Jungling, headed to work, and Rachel was on drop-off duty for Anders and Linnea, who were 11 months old at the time. The boy and girl were miracle babies for the Mandan, N.D., couple, who struggled with infertility for seven years.

“When we found out we were having twins, other twin parents said, ‘It’s awesome. You’re going to have the most fun.’ They were right,” Ryne told Good Morning America.

“Anders, he was the snuggler … always giving hugs and he really liked being held,” he added. “They were pretty inseparable. When they went to bed, if they weren’t sleeping, they’d look at each other and make noises until they fell asleep. If Linnea left the room, Anders wasn’t OK. He really liked companionship and being around her.”

On Jan. 10, Rachel, who was a teacher at the time, brought Anders and Linnea inside their day care facility while strapped into their car seats. Linnea was awake. Anders was close to sleeping.

“With two, Rachel didn’t feel comfort leaving one in the car, so she would grab them both in the carriers and bring them in,” Ryne said. “It was common practice. Every day, we’d give the day care provider the update — how they slept the night before, what they ate. [The kids] were usually out of the car seat.”

Ryne said the day care provider removed Linnea from her car seat. Anders was still in his car seat when his mother walked out the door.

“Anders looked over at Rachel and Rachel said, ‘Bye buddy,'” Ryne said. “He kind of smiled, and she left — with the assumption that he was going to be taken out of his car seat, and he wasn’t.”

“It’s not something you ever think is going to happen.”

A few minutes after 10 a.m., Rachel received a call at work from police.

“They asked her twice, ‘Are you sitting down?’ And they said they were coming to pick her up and that Anders was being rushed to the hospital,” Ryne said.

Ryne, who was also working in education, said his wife called to let him know Anders was being hospitalized.

“She said, something happened to Anders and you need to get to the hospital and I think it’s really bad,'” he recalled. “I remember her voice, I never heard it like that. She was really worried, it was tough. She thought it was kind of weird, but she knew it was pretty serious, if something like that was happening.”

When Ryne arrived to the hospital he was met by two detectives. Ryne said he learned Anders was left sleeping in his car seat for two hours. The day care provider did not know of the risks involved when leaving a sleeping baby in a car seat, Ryne explained.

Anders was given CPR by the day care provider until paramedics arrived and worked on him for 40 minutes. After 30 minutes in the emergency room, Anders was airlifted from Bismarck to a hospital in Fargo, N.D.

“To actually realize what was happening with our son, that was hard,” Ryne said. “We prayed a lot that he would get better, that this would all go away. We were praying for a miracle to happen. At the same time, we started to pray that this story would lead to a miracle. Maybe Anders surviving, maybe that wasn’t the miracle. Maybe it was preventing this [from happening] to someone else.”

On Jan. 12 at 5:45 p.m., after three days on life support, Anders died. An investigation determined he died from positional asphyxia in the car seat after his airway was cut off from his head slumping over and his chin falling into his chest.

“It’s not something that you ever think is going to happen,” Ryne said. “Everybody describes it as a parent’s worst nightmare. I’ll definitely agree with that. You feel helpless when you can’t do anything for your child. It’s hard to say … but we really think lots of good has come out of this.”

“We need this story to get this out there.”

After losing Anders, a friend of the couple connected them to Carma Hanson, coordinator of Safe Kids Worldwide’s Grand Forks, N.D., chapter. The organization’s mission is to help prevent unintentional injuries or death to children with five E’s: education, encouragement, engineering, enforcement and evaluation.

“Carma immediately was like, ‘We need this story to get out there,'” Ryne recalled.

In July, Ryne and Rachel attended the 2019 Safe Kids Worldwide Childhood Injury Prevention Convention where they shared their story with other parents who lost a child through tragic events.

“My heart bleeds for them because I know this is a really difficult time,” Lorrie Walker, the technical adviser for Safe Kids, told GMA. “The fact that they want to help other families is amazing and I can’t thank them enough.”

Ryne and Rachel now have their own mission to spread awareness about positional asphyxia and overall safe sleep practices for children.

“We know it’s not the car seat’s fault, it’s an education issue,” Ryne said. “The old adage of ‘Don’t wake a sleeping baby’ is so wrong when it’s not safe sleep.”

In 2017, there were 3,600 sudden unexpected infant deaths (SUID) in infants less than 1 year old in the U.S., according to the CDC. Of these deaths, 1,400 were due to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), about 1,300 were unknown causes, and about 900 deaths were due to scenarios involving accidental suffocation (like positional asphyxia) and strangulation in bed.

Besides positional asphyxia, the AAP says deaths can also happen in car seats due to strangulation from straps that are unbuckled or partially buckled.

Edith Bracho-Sanchez, a primary care pediatrician and assistant professor of pediatrics at Columbia University, told GMA that this happens when the devices are being used for things like unsupervised naps or soothing.

“The vast majority of these tragic deaths are easily preventable by taking infants out of car seats and strollers when you’re no longer traveling and placing them in a crib or bassinet,” Bracho-Sanchez said. “This may mean bringing a portable bassinet or crib if the place where parents are going does not have an environment where their babies can continue to sleep safely. “

The AAP said babies “should not be placed on an incline to sleep.”

“With the head elevated, an infant is in a position that could lead to asphyxia,” the AAP noted. “The straps on such products also can strangle infants. In addition, the AAP does not recommend any products for sleep that require restraining a baby, especially if the product also rocks.”

Study co-author Dr. Jeffrey D. Colvin said mothers, fathers and other family members should be educated on safe sleep practices.

“They also need to have parents educate anyone who is taking care of their infant, whether it’s a grandparent, babysitter or child care provider, that car seats are not substitutes for cribs and bassinets,” he said.

Baby Anders inspires education for sleep safety

As part of their new safe sleep initiative, Ryne and Rachel, who welcomed a son, Elias, on Oct. 2, helped launch a class for grandparents at Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health on safe sleep, furniture tip-over prevention, nutrition, breastfeeding support and more.

They hope to eventually have car seat manufacturers place a warning directly on their devices, reminding parents and caregivers that it’s not for sleeping.

“It’s in the pamphlet, but no one reads the instructions besides the installation,” Ryne noted.

Here are safe sleep practices from the AAP to prevent sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), plus how to prevent positional asphyxiation in car seats:

1) Do not use a car seat as an alternative to a crib or bassinet.
As Bracho-Sanchez said, be sure to bring a portable bassinet so babies can continue safe sleep while traveling.

2) Children who fall asleep in a car safety seat while traveling in a motor vehicle should remain in the car seat until travel ends.

3) After reaching a destination, children who are still sleeping should be removed from the car seat and placed in a crib or bassinet.

4) Avoid use of soft bedding, pillows, crib bumpers or stuffed animals inside a child’s crib.

5) If you’re getting sleepy or tired, put the baby down on the hard surface to avoid risk for injury or death.

6) Share a bedroom with parents, but no co-sleeping, preferably until the baby turns 1 but at least for the first six months. The AAP says that room sharing decreases the risk of SIDS “by as much as 50 percent.”

7) Avoid overheating.

8) Follow car seat manufacturer’s guidelines, and make sure the device is installed at a 45-degree angle in the vehicle.

9) Do not place car seats on elevated surfaces or on soft surfaces like a bed, mattress, or couch.

10) Be sure the car seat’s shoulder straps and hip straps are positioned tightly, and the chest clip is buckled at under arm level.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Doctor uses TikTok to warn kids about vaping — and they’re listening

Paolo_Toffanin/iStock(NEW YORK) — When 29-year-old Dr. Rose Marie Leslie, a second-year family resident at the University of Minnesota Medical School, first found out about TikTok, she did what every other millennial did and downloaded the app to try it out.

“I had seen other TikTok videos on other social media platforms and they were always really funny and creative and made me laugh a lot,” she told ABC News’ Good Morning America.

She’s only been on the app for six months, but she caught on to the trend quickly by first using the app to depict how chaotic life is as a resident.

Perhaps what helped her gain a larger following was when she started sharing informational videos about medical facts.

“I realized the most likes and the most comments were on these specific medical videos,” she said. “The demographic that was using TikTok maybe was not getting as much health information at home or at school and was seeking it out in other places.”

Now she takes her office to the app to talk about things like tuberculosis, mental health and even sex education.

And she still tries to teach her followers a thing or two about health while keeping it fun.

“It’s been a great way for me to understand what health topics are important to youth and young adults,” she said.

She added, “I share health information the way I would to one of my friends. I really think that’s the most effective way about talking about a health topic and getting people to listen.”

Recently, Leslie’s videos have been focusing on a more serious topic: vaping.

In a story first reported by Rolling Stone, the doctor was featured after she started sharing TikTok videos about the epidemic.

In one video that has over 600K views, Leslie shows a lung X-ray, explaining in detail how lungs look like for someone who vapes.

“If you’re thinking about quitting, now’s the time to do it,” she says in the video.

She told GMA, “I have been following all the reports on this new disease related to vaping and thought it would be really important for teens who are on TikTok to hear so I decided to take that information and spread it on TikTok in a palatable and easy to understand way.”

Vaping-related illnesses in the U.S. has reached an all-time high with more than two dozen deaths confirmed, and more than 1,000 lung injury cases associated with the use of e-cigarette products reported in 49 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Recently, the CDC found that most patients with vaping-related illnesses report a history of using THC vaping-related products which suggest they were either obtained off the street or from other informal sources.

So far, the response to Leslie’s videos has been overwhelmingly positive. And teens are taking note.

Martin Wolk, a teen who follows Leslie on TikTok, was inspired to quit vaping after being an avid smoker for five years.

“I was scrolling through her videos and watching her vaping videos and it was really informative,” Wolk told GMA. “She showed you damage to the lungs and I’ve never really seen like X-ray photos of damage to people’s lungs after vaping so it kind of scared me and I wanted to do something about it.”

Like many teens, Wolk started smoking in middle school after being drawn to the variety of flavors. He described how hard it was for him to quit, but how important it is for people like Leslie to use social media to reach youth about the issue.

“There are a lot of kids right now who are vaping and it’s good to reach them through social media which they are always on,” he said.

“I’ve been pretty surprised that a lot of followers are asking me pretty basic health questions,” Leslie said. “I really feel like continuing to make videos on TikTok will help address a lot of the questions that people have.”

As the CDC continues to investigate vaping-related illnesses and lung-related injuries, Leslie said that getting information to teens is critical and doctors like her will start to use platforms like TikTok to reach them.

“As time goes on it’s just going to be more popular that medical professionals are using social media as a way to spread public health information and get connected to large groups of people,” Leslie said.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Woman wins lawsuit after being fired while struggling with postpartum depression

Courtesy Maria Alves(NEW YORK) — Maria Alves thought the crippling anxiety and worry she said she felt after the birth of her son three years ago were simply “baby blues” that would go away.

When the feelings continued weeks post-delivery and got worse, Alves asked her then-employer, Boston University, for an extension of her maternity leave, which she was granted.

Alves, of Brockton, Massachusetts, was eventually diagnosed with postpartum depression. When she asked Boston University for additional medical leave to give her more time to recover, she was denied the leave and then terminated from her job.

Alves, a single mom, had worked in administrative roles at Boston University for nine years. Her son, Luis, was 4 months old at the time.

“It was a compound effect because you have the postpartum depression and next thing you know I was terminated,” Alves told ABC News’ Good Morning America. “Financially it was drastic. I was maxing out credit cards because I had a newborn I had to feed, and clothes and diapers to buy.”

Alves said she isolated herself while suffering from postpartum depression and had only told her sister and a cousin about her struggles. Her cousin happened to work in human resources in another field, and when she learned Alves had been fired, she encouraged her to seek legal help.

Last month, three years after her firing, a jury awarded Alves, now 40, a total of $144,000 in compensatory damages for lost wages and emotional distress at the end of a six-day trial in Suffolk Superior Court.

The 10-person jury ruled that Boston University violated the Massachusetts discrimination laws, specifically disability and medical condition discrimination, based on Alves’ diagnosis of postpartum depression.

“I believe I did the right thing in holding [Boston University] accountable,” Alves said. “Postpartum depression is really real but unfortunately when you have it you don’t want to talk about it and you don’t want to expose yourself for fear of losing your job.”

Postpartum depression is a mood disorder that affects one in nine new mothers in the U.S., according to the U.S. Office on Women’s Health. It is considered a serious mental illness during which feelings of sadness and anxiety may be extreme and may interfere with a woman’s ability to care for herself or her family

“It’s difficult to explain for someone who has never gone through it,” said Alves. “I really didn’t even know what it was. I just knew that my sister had gone through the ‘baby blues’ and I figured it was going to go away for me in a few weeks and it didn’t.”

While many women do not know what to expect with postpartum depression, even more women don’t know what their employee rights are when they are pregnant or suffering from postpartum complications, according to Joan C. Williams, director of the Center for WorkLife Law, a California-based research and advocacy organization.

“Women who are pregnant and women who have postpartum depression often have a qualifying disability under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA),” said Williams. “The ADA imposes a whole new set of duties on the employer.”

The ADA, signed into law in 1990, requires employers to work with employees to see if they can create a reasonable accommodation to allow the employee to do the essential parts of the job without creating an undue hardship for the employer, according to Williams.

If, for instance, a woman who is pregnant is a cashier, she could request under the ADA that her employer provide a stool to sit on so she would not have to stand for her entire shift, explained Williams.

“The ADA requires the employer to work with the employee in an interactive process, like, ‘Would this work for you?”” said Williams. “And then the employer would come back with another proposal and say, ‘Well, would this work for you?'”

Alves, who had just been promoted months before her pregnancy, claimed in her lawsuit against Boston University that the university did not work with her to provide a reasonable accommodation. Her attorneys, Matthew Fogelman and Jeff Simons, presented email evidence during the trial and called Alves’ therapist to the stand.

“Their reason [to fire Alves] was that they just couldn’t hold the job any longer, that the department was busy and they needed to fill the position,” said Fogelman. “They tried to argue in the case that there would have been undue hardship on the company but the jury did not find that persuasive.”

Boston University said in a statement to GMA in response to the lawsuit, “The University respects the jurors’ verdict and wishes Ms. Alves the best going forward. Thank you.”

Alves will take home around $182,000 after accounting for interest, according to Fogelman.

“I think it’s notable,” he said of the jury’s ruling. “Employers have to be equipped to know how to handle not only maternity leave but other complications, whether it’s a mental condition or a physical condition after birth. Maybe you have to hire a [temporary employee] for another month or maybe you have to borrow someone else from another department or maybe the person can work part-time or from home.”

Williams’ Center for WorkLife Law has established a website, PregnantatWork.org, and a hotline — (415) 703-8276 — as resources for women to know their rights in the workplace.

Williams wants women to know that even beyond paid maternity leave — which only about 35% of women in the U.S. have, according to the Society for Human Resource Management — and the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) — which only covers about 50% of workers in the U.S. , according to Williams — they have rights through the ADA.

“That is the big news here,” she said. “What we have found is that OBGYNs often didn’t know that, employers didn’t know that and pregnant women didn’t know that.”

“Not everyone has a cousin in human resources to talk to,” Williams said, referring to Alves.

Alves’ son, Luis, is now 3 and she’s back to work now at a law firm.

Although she has not recovered financially from her termination, Alves said she is on the other side of postpartum depression, no longer isolating herself or living with crippling anxiety.

“Luis is happy. I’m happy. We’re doing good,” she said. “I would hope people with postpartum depression reach out and get help because it is real.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

University of New Mexico handing out coasters that test for date rape drugs

(Courtesy University of New Mexico) The University of New Mexico is handing out coasters that will test for drugs.(ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.) — Students at the University of New Mexico can now pick up coasters that will alert them if any drugs are in their drinks, the school announced.

The university’s Campus Office of Substance Abuse Prevention said they are handing out the coasters, which test for GHB and ketamine, drugs commonly referred to as “date rape drugs.”

Students can place a drop of their drink onto a dot on the coaster, using their finger or a straw, and if a blue dot appears, it means the drinks tested positive for a detectable amount of either GHB or ketamine.

A “drug detector” built into the coaster reacts to the chemicals in the drink and produces the blue dot, according to Dr. Randall Starling, a senior research scientist at the office.

Amber Greene, a marketing assistant in the office, told ABC News that there are about 200 coasters left.

A few students have personally come to the office to pick them up, while other coasters were sent to fraternities and sororities on campus.

“We’re always doing prevention work to try to keep students safe when they’re out drinking,” Greene said.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Rage yoga trend turns tranquil practice on its head

RyanJLane/iStock(NEW YORK) — A new yoga craze is all the rage and a bit of an oxymoron.

Rage yoga has started to stretch across the U.S. where more new instructors are adopting the practice that includes alcohol, profanity and some not so family-friendly poses.

The seemingly off-brand flow, which first took roots in Canada, may be the antithesis of what most yogis expect from a dimly lit room with soft music and calming poses.

Lindsay Istace, the founder of Rage Yoga, told Health.com that “It’s meant to be a different approach to yoga for those who find their peaceful center in a different way.”

The practice is more chaotic and involves ones sense of humor.

Students are encouraged to let it all out with screams, curse words and hand gestures, Istace explained, but it still incorporates traditional yoga postures and breathing, just with alternative principles.

Some of-age participants are even served an alcoholic drink that they can enjoy throughout the class.

According to rageyoga.com, there are online training programs available for people interested in becoming a Rage yoga instructor that start at $800.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

How a blue Halloween bucket can help kids with autism go trick-or-treating

Savany/iStock(NEW YORK) — Halloween is around the corner and parents have a sweet way to make trick-or-treating more inclusive and fun for everyone, especially children with autism.

The tradition at the end of the month when kids dress up and go door-to-door can be daunting for someone with autism, especially when prompted to boast, “trick or treat!”

One mother took to Facebook and shared the story of her 3-year-old son who is nonverbal and said they will be trying a new technique to ensure people who hand out candy understand he has a disability.

“This year we will be trying the blue bucket to signify he has autism. Please allow him (or any other person with a blue bucket) to enjoy this day and don’t worry I’ll still say ‘trick or treat’ for him,” she wrote. “This holiday is hard enough without any added stress. Thank you in advance.”

The post went viral and quickly garnered mass attention, which has helped spread the word.

Another Pennsylvania mother, Michelle Koenig, told ABC Scranton affiliate WNEP this is her 5-year-old son’s first year trick or treating.

“I think it’s hard for them, but it’s getting easier. People are becoming more accepting of it and people are aware,” she explained. “It’s good and it’s getting better.”

Rachel Brnilovich, a clinical director for the Pennsylvania Autism Action Center, said she thinks the blue bucket idea is a great one.

“We love this campaign. It really gives our kids an opportunity to go out, no matter their age and experience Halloween,” Brnilovich told the station. “Taking notice of the blue bucket and then just treating them like a child, how any child would be, give them the candy and just move on.”

Koenig said, “It gives people a chance to understand — and it opens everyone’s eyes.”

The idea is to have a blue bucket, or at least something blue, but there are no special logos or tags.

Other Halloween trends like the “Teal Pumpkin Project” have successfully caught on and raised awareness for food allergies. Read more about that here.

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Town goes all-out on early holiday decorations for girl battling brain cancer

Jody Davidson(ULSTER, Pa.) — In a typical year, Ariah Cook’s grandparents are the first house in Ulster, Pa., to put up holiday decorations.

But this hasn’t been a typical year.

Ariah, 6, is battling stage 3 glioblastoma, an aggressive type of brain cancer, and her grandmother with whom she lives just hasn’t had the time to get into the holiday spirit — for any holiday. She’s simply been too busy taking Ariah to appointments.

So neighbors Jody Davidson and Amber Gray decided to do it for them.

“Amber and I came up with the idea to light the town up from one end of Main Street to the other and all in between,” Davidson told Good Morning America. Gray came up with a flier asking the whole town to decorate for any and all holidays, and within two days it was done.

The two women’s children attend school with Ariah and her sister Selene.

“She is one of the happiest girls we have ever met — she always has a smile on her face and that helps all of us to keep a smile on ours,” Davidson said.

The little girl arrived home last week from a week-long treatment at Geisinger Janet Weis Children’s Hospital in Danville, Pa., and rode into town on a firetruck.

“It was accompanied by several other trucks from surrounding communities who had heard of her homecoming just hours before,” Davidson said.

The Halloween-Christmas-Easter-purple decorations were a hit.

“She loves it — everyday there is a new decoration that pops up in town,” Davidson said. “She absolutely loves Christmas, and with the unknowns of her time here on earth with us, most of the decorations are Christmas and her favorite color purple. She enjoys her family pushing her around town to see all the lights and decorations and it helps to ease the bad days.”

The support for Ariah has moved well beyond Ulster, Gray told GMA.

“We get messages from states away of people lighting up a corner of their homes in support of her — it’s just truly amazing,” Gray said. “There is just no way to possibly thank everyone for what they have done to keep Ariah fighting. While her prognosis isn’t the brightest, our town’s love for her is.”

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