A new company may help individuals in New York City improve their sexual health. TaxiTreats will install special vending machines in the back of taxis this upcoming summer. Among the items available for purchase - condoms, snacks and hand sanitizer.
"Our goal is to provide people with things they want, when they want them, right where they are," Brian Shimmerlik, founder of TaxiTreats, told The Huffington Post.
Medical Daily reported that the touch screen vending machines have been specially designed by aerospace engineers specifically to work safely and reliably in a taxi environment. Additionally, Shimmerlik, who is working toward an MBA degree at New York University's Stern School of Business, told the news provider that he's researching ways that the cost of items purchased in transit will be automatically tacked onto a rider's cab fare. Similar machines are already being used inside Manhattan area bars and restaurants.
While TaxiTreats hasn't been approved by the city's Taxi and Limousine Commission, some feel it will be embraced by the New York Department of Public Health, as incidences of STDs continue to grow in the U.S.
A recent study released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that more than 110 million Americans currently have an STD. Additionally, nearly 20 million new infections occur each year.
Condoms, when used correctly and consistently, help reduce the risk of contracting many STDs including HIV, gonorrhea and chlamydia.
TaxiTreats isn't the only company targeting taxi riders for the distribution of condoms. Ad Age reported that condom manufacturer Trojan recently customized three New York City taxis as Condom Cabs. In addition to being adorned with a giant condom, a Trojan representative rode inside of each one to quiz passengers about sexual health issues. Riders were eligible for free rides on Valentine's Day and the following evening and also received free condoms for their participation.