In response to consumer demand, Target plans to remove reference to gender and gender-specific colors from its in-store displays in the toy aisles.
In a statement issued on Target’s website, the retailer notes, “Over the past year, guests have raised important questions about a handful of signs in our stores that offer product suggestions based on gender … as guests have pointed out, in some departments like Toys, Home or Entertainment, suggesting products by gender is unnecessary.”
The decision comes on the heels of a tweet from an Ohio-based mom that went viral in June, which depicted a Target sign that clearly separated the construction toy aisle by gender.
— Abi Bechtel (@abianne) June 1, 2015
According to the company’s statement, “In the Toys aisles, we’ll also remove reference to gender, including the use of pink, blue, yellow, or green paper on the back walls of our shelves. You’ll see these changes start to happen over the next few months.”
Once implemented, the change may not appear as visually dramatic as one would imagine, because 32 feet of shelf space full of Barbie dolls and accessories will still radiate a pink glow to those who pass. However, the retailer is listening to consumer concern and adjusting its gendered in-store marketing.
Earlier this year, Amazon removed “boys” and “girls” categories from its toy department, and while the categories no longer exist in the site’s sidebar or department menu, it’s still possible to search for toys based on gender, which then prompts a mini homepage featuring “Boys’ Toys and Games” and “Girls’ Toys and Games.”
But, you know what they say: baby steps.
See what Parent Advisory Board Member Melissa Hunter, aka “Mommy” from Mommy and Gracie Show, has to say about Target’s change: