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Woman with dangerous marijuana allergy fights weed-friendly condo board

A pro-pot smoking condo building in Mississauga is putting a resident’s life in danger.

Adele Schroder has a life-threatening allergy to marijuana. Just the smell of pot smoke can set off a chain of reactions. “My lips and throat start tingling, my eyes water, I have trouble catching my breath,” said the 38-year-old.

Schroder discovered the allergy at a party when she was 17 years old and was diagnosed by an allergists a couple years later.

“The first time I went to hospital it took 2 doses of epipen and I was put on steroids.”

In the 13 years she has lived at Applewood Place near Bloor and Dixie, smoke has never been an issue but with legalization around the corner Schroder says neighbours are becoming brazen. “They no longer smoke near the outside vents or put towels under their doors. Pot smoke is in the hallways a couple times a week.”

The Applewood Place Condo Board tried to ban marijuana smoking and growing as many condos are doing across the country but residents fought the original ruling and voted to allow it.

The board’s President David LaFayette says it’s a tricky situation “We may have to ban smoking in certain areas around this lady and if that doesn’t work then unfortunately the courts will get involved,” said LaFayette

This is a human rights code issue according to condo Lawyer Denise Lash. She tells CityNews it trumps the condo act: “I think the board is weighing everyone’s interests. When you are dealing with the human rights code and somebody who has a medical reason they really need to focus on that. There is tremendous liability here if something happens to Adele.”

Marijuana allergies could become more prevalent with legalization as more people are exposed to the all of aspects of the plant, including smoke. Some research suggests up 10 per cent of people could have a bad reaction, but studies have been limited and conflicting.

For now Adele stuffs a towel under her front door, stays off the balcony and locks her windows. “Best case we deal with recreational marijuana and tell people you are making a choice, it’s not a need. When you make that choice … you’re taking away my choice to live without feeling like I’m going to die.”