After #MeToo, pepper spray to be given away in Oscar goodie bags

Ben Arnold
(Credit: Matt Sayles/Invision/AP, File)

It’s a stark display of how the #MeToo movement has hit every corner of Hollywood.

This year, among the usual plane tickets, holidays and luxury cosmetic items given away to Oscar nominees, will be a canister of pepper spray and other personal safety products.

“This event is a unique opportunity for us to lend a helping hand in the #MeToo movement with solutions that take aim at the harassment culture that’s been pervasive most notably in the entertainment industry and in broader society,” said David Nance, the CEO of security systems company Sabre.

“We hope to help others by inspiring self-empowerment.”

Sabre is giving away five products in the Oscar gift bag, including a key-ring sized pepper spray, a gel pepper spray, two personal body alarms and a kit to test whether your drink has been drugged.

The organisers of the Oscars have previously taken legal action over the unofficial gift bags, provided by outside companies, but still the bags, sometimes worth as much as $100,000, are given to nominees.

(Credit: Sabre)

As well as the items from Sabre, there’s also another branded lightweight pepper spray called Pepperface.

“In the aftermath of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, PepperFace is arriving in Hollywood at the perfect time.” said the company’s CEO Brian Pennington.

“We want to be an awareness symbol to help end violence against women and also provide resources for those unfortunate enough to have become a victim of violence.”

Other items in this year’s offering include a 12-day trip to Tanzania, a ’24 karat gold facial’, and a ‘conflict-free’ diamond necklace.

Strangely, pepper sprays have appeared in the Oscar gift bags in the past, in 2014 when a pink and camouflage-print mace pepper gun was given away.

The ceremony takes place at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles on March 4.

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