A national push to encourage houses that do want to hand out allergen-friendly treats to display a pumpkin painted teal has been gathering steam this fall, but one Connecticut family wants their entire neighborhood to go allergen-free for Halloween this year.
Bright orange signs posted all over New Britain that say "Don't exclude my child" are urging the neighborhood adults to "practice responsible parenting" on Halloween and not hand out candy with nuts, gluten or dairy. The signs suggest carrot sticks or raisins — but stay away from Raisinettes! — instead.
Some neighbors are understanding, but others think this is going too far.
"My wife would probably like to give out something wholesome and nutritious, but certainly not a vegetable," one neighbor tells NBC Connecticut, but he also says it shouldn't be his responsibility to police what other people's kids are eating. "We went through our kid's food and made sure there weren't any hazardous items or food stuff we didn't want them to eat. We observed what they were doing and took care of it ourselves, as parents."
When the Hartfort Courant covered the story, comments range from the measured response to the predictable backlash. "Someone's a control freak. My kid can't eat candy so neither should yours. The selfishness is knee-deep," sniped one commenter. Another parsed the sign's requests, perhaps according to noted medical expert Dr. Google: "Nut allergies are life threatening. Dairy allergies are uncomfortable at best but not life threatening. Gluten allergies aren't an allergy at all but a conscious choice." Mommy and Daddy, please don't fight (in the comment sections of newspaper websites).