If you have a daughter in high school or college, you’ve almost certainly warned her a hundred or so times to NEVER put down her drink or leave it unattended.
That’s because the problem with date rape drugs like GHB and ketamine is that they’re odorless, colorless and tasteless. So if something gets slipped into a drink, the victim probably wouldn’t realize until it’s too late.
Enter DrinkSavvy – a new startup that hopes to fight sexual assault by alerting people to what might be in their cup.
With the help of a U.S. chemistry professor, the company’s founder Mike Abramson says he has created a line of cups, straws and stirrers made with a material that changes color if a drink has been spiked.
The products are still in the development stage but DrinkSavvy says they could be available to the public as soon as 2014.
Abramson said he came up with the idea after he himself was victimized.
“Within the past three years, three of my close friends, and myself have been the unwitting victims of consuming an odorless, colorless, and tasteless drug slipped into our drink… And I want to prevent it from happening to anyone else,” he said in a video on Indiegogo.
Ultimately, the company hopes to implement their technology in a wide range of drink containers such as glasses, cans and bottles.
The current models react to the three most common date rape drugs – GHB, ketamine and rohypnol – but Abramson says updates will be made for new drugs in the future.
DrinkSavvy’s products could be a powerful tool against a very real threat. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, some 200,000 women were raped in the US in 2007 with the aid of a date rape drug – and because so many cases go unreported, the actual number is believed to be 80 to 100 percent higher.
Do you know anyone who has been a victim of date rape drugs?
The Terrible Truth About Date Rape – Get the facts about date rape and what your rights as a woman are
What Is Date Rape? – GirlsHealth.gov provides information for women on how to protect themselves, as well as what to do if a woman has been a victim of a sexual assault.