A pair of New York politicians has introduced legislation that would force consumer goods corporation Procter & Gamble to make their Tide Pod product less appetizing to human beings.
State Senator Brad Hoylman and Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas, both Democrats, revealed their proposal at a joint press conference in New York’s capital city of Albany on Tuesday.
If passed, Senate bill S100A would require liquid detergent packets sold in the state of New York to be “designed in an opaque, uniform color that is not attractive to children and is not easily permeated by a child’s bite.”
The bill further states that each Tide Pod packet should be “enclosed in a separate, individual, non-permeable, child-resistant wrapper” and that the package they come in should have a warning label saying the product is “harmful if swallowed.”
And while S100A is being presented within a broader effort to protect kids, it’s clear the move was prompted by the “Tide Pod Challenge,” a recent social media trend that has young adults filming themselves deliberately ingesting the product.
In a letter the politicians sent to Procter & Gamble CEO David Taylor, Hoylman and Simotas refer to the “alarming social media stunt” as a “renewed opportunity” to tackle the “continuing problem” of people ingesting Tide Pods, accidental or otherwise.
On January 22, Taylor addressed the Tide Pod Challenge in a press release, stating:
“The possible life-altering consequences of this act, seeking internet fame, can derail young people’s hopes and dreams and ultimately their health.”
Continuing, Taylor stated the obvious — that “even the most stringent standards and protocols, labels and warnings can’t prevent intentional abuse fueled by poor judgment and the desire for popularity.”
New York Assemblyman Joseph Errigo appeared to agree with Taylor, telling the NY Daily News that it’s not the job of manufacturers to protect people from themselves:
“There’s no easy way to spin it other than to say the people who are participating in this trend are old enough to know laundry detergent is not safe for consumption, and the people behind this legislation should know that it’s not the manufacturers who are to blame when people make stupid decisions with their products.”