On September 13th 2013, as I was doing my family's laundry, my 15-month-old grandson bit into a Tide Detergent Pod he mistook for candy and nearly died. He began to go into respiratory distress, and became lethargic. He became violently ill almost immediately with severe vomiting and diarrhea, and was rushed to the emergency room where he was thankfully saved. I learned shortly after that over 5,700 children across the country have become dangerously ill from mistaking these types of laundry pods as a brightly colored, edible treat.
Now I'm asking Tide to stop making laundry pods look like children's candy so this doesn't happen to other families.
The pods are designed to attract consumers, but to many kids, the bright colors and bite-size chemicals are easily confused as something edible like candy. And while Tide does have a warning that the pods may be harmful just like other detergents, they know that’s misleading as it understates the real risk. Tide markets these pod products as being unique compared to other detergent formulas specifically because of the concentrated power of the chemicals inside and the fact that they dissolve as soon as getting wet -- whether by water or child’s saliva. That’s why pods like these are so toxic and sicken children by the hundreds every single week.
Tide knows there is a problem, but I think they need to take additional steps to show real results, not just cover themselves from lawsuits. In July, they announced more safety warnings to their packaging including a label on the top resealable container, but the problem is that actual pods still look like candy to a toddler outside of the package. And the way so many people transport these pods when going outside of the home to the laundromat or machines downstairs in the basement of the apartment building is not in the bulky container.
Tide must know this since it’s one of the biggest reasons customers use the pods instead of carrying around big containers of powder or liquid detergent! They need to add an extra layer of wrapping on each individual pod so they’re safer to transport once out of the store container.
I know Change.org is a great place for consumers like us to come together to win campaigns. There was even one that got Tide to stop using a carcinogen as an ingredient in some detergents! I believe that with enough support from consumers and parents concerned for their families' safety, Tide will listen and change their detergent pod packaging to look less like candy by adding an extra layer of protection around each pod and more clear warnings to reflect the real risk these pods have been proven to carry. Will you join me by signing my petition?