This school year, kids with severe allergies are going back to school with temporary tattoos that will boldly announce their specific food allergies.
“Right now there’s a huge awareness, whether because of going back to school or because of the recent incident in California,” SafetyTat founder Michele Welsh explained, referring to the recent death of a teen with a peanut allergy. “Unfortunately it sometimes takes something like that for people to say, ‘Wow, it really can happen.'”
SafetyTat offers temporary tattoos and skin stickers that parents can use to scrawl emergency information, and in this case, food allergies. Other companies like Peanut Free Zone are also making temporary allergy tattoos that alert people when a child has a severe peanut allergy.
“We recently used them for the first time during our trip to New York,” wrote a parent on the SafetyTat Facebook page. “Our son is a toddler and has a severe peanut allergy, so having my number on him and an alert for his allergy on him is important to me.”
But not everyone is a proponent of the tattoo as it may become a source of bullying.
“A lot of kids do get bullied at school about their food allergies, so there is some concern about whether this might give more ammunition to kids,” American College of Allergy spokesman Kevin McGrath explained. “But it may just be another thing to make parents feel more confident when sending their children off to a party or picnic or class trip.”
The question then remains, should food allergy safety be a priority or should parents be wary of possible bullying?