The Safety Pouch Is On A Mission To Make Traffic Stops Just That

In Summary

Loyola University New Orleans student David Price took his experience as a Black driver and turned it into a product to make interactions with police safer during traffic stops.  

Getting your driver’s license and your first car is a life-changing accomplishment, but for Black drivers, the conversation that comes after is a rite of passage that could mean life or death.  

When David Price was a teenager, his parents sat him down after he got his license and had “the talk.” Many Black families are familiar with the conversation which stresses the importance of following an officers’ orders, recording the interaction, not making any sudden movements and most importantly, doing whatever you must to stay alive.  

The prospect of driving became less about freedom and more about survival for the young Black teenager from New Orleans. That reality caused him to think of solutions to the problem at hand. The problem that Black people just like him were dying in traffic stops with police—people like Daunte Wright, Darrius Stewart, Philando Castile and Jacob Blake.  

Research from the Stanford Open Policing Project found Black drivers are 20% more likely to be stopped by police than white drivers. Data from a 2020 study also revealed Black drivers were searched up to 2 times as often as white drivers while being less likely to be carrying weapons, drugs or illegal contraband.  

Additionally, Kelsey Shoub, a political science professor at the University of South Carolina, said the issue is systemic. “For me, there are a few big takeaways from the data and the first two are probably not surprising,” she said. “The first is that ‘driving while Black’ is very much a thing: it’s everywhere and it’s not just a North Carolina or a Southern problem but across the United States. The second thing is that it appears to be more systemic than a few ‘bad apple’ officers engaged in racial profiling.”  

RELATED: Philadelphia Police to Stop Pulling Over Drivers for Low-Level Offenses  

The data proves being Black behind the wheel is more dangerous and Price was on a mission to make traffic stops just that—traffic stops.  

When Price got to the Loyola University New Orleans, a class required him to come up with an invention for a project. He remembered the conversation with his parents and created a rough concept for an item that would allow drivers to store their credentials easily and limit movement during a traffic stop. The professor of his class realized its importance and recommended Price launch the product for consumption, resulting in the birth of The Safety Pouch.  

The product organizes a driver’s important documentation and allows them to place it on the window for officers. Price developed the product to “prevent active reaching in front of law enforcement during traffic stops.” Since the goal is to limit movement and increase transparency, The Safety Pouch only comes in the color fluorescent orange so officers can be sure it is not a weapon.  

When The Safety Pouch was being developed, Price took police officers into consideration. “If officers do not feel safe interacting with the product, then they won’t interact with it at all. They won’t allow you to use it. So, if it’s not beneficial to them, then there’s no purpose of the product,” Price said. “Traffic stops are extremely high stressful situations. There’s a lot of tension involved and that’s for both parties.” Citing his experiences with people trying to say The Safety Pouch was an anti-police product, Price emphasized that the experiences of police officers were taken into account as well.  

Price invented The Safety Pouch to limit tension from traffic stops and facilitate the interaction between a driver and a police officer. He hopes it keeps drivers safe and offers them peace of mind. With parents being his largest customer base, Price is hopeful it will give teenage drivers more freedom and parents the ability to be at peace while their children are on the road.   

For Price, The Safety Pouch is not just a great tool, but he also considers it to be important social commentary. “I really hope it sends a message and kind of creates a moment around itself pushing the importance of why this issue needs to be addressed,” he said.  

The invention has caught the eye of influential people, including Tina Lawson, Holly Robinson-Pete, Erykah Badu and Beyoncé, who awarded The Safety Pouch a $10,000 BeyGOOD grant. He said he was “in shock” when he received the grant, but he’s grateful because of the lack of capital Black business owners are often given.  

Citing his experience creating the product, getting funding was one of the hardest parts for Price. “Capital, in the beginning, was a huge issue because, although it looks extremely simple, it was extremely expensive to get it to its manufacturing stage,” he said. “It was extremely time-consuming and financially consuming. I really had to work hard to find money that was available to kind of help me to continue to grow my business.”  

Price plans to develop a patent for The Safety Pouch to protect his concept and brand. The 20-year-old innovator isn’t sure where his studies will take him, but he plans on developing more products like The Safety Pouch to increase transparency and keep Black drivers safe.  

To purchase The Safety Pouch, visit Amazon or click here

If you or someone you know is struggling from trauma triggered by this story, resources are available here.  

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