Petition Asks Toys ‘R’ Us to Stop Stereotyping Children

A new petition on Change.org is asking Toys ‘R’ Us to stop applying gender stereotypes in their catalogs and store displays. Started by Carolyn Danckaert of Washington, DC the petition recalls her experiences of dealing with gender stereotypes when trying to purchase toys for her four nieces. Danckaert has launched a website A Mighty Girl to help make some changes.

At A Mighty Girl, we believe that toy stores’ designation of toys as being for ‘boys’ or ‘girls’ is limiting and detrimental to all children. Such segregated play leads girls and boys to hone different skill sets from an early age; skills they build upon to determine the direction of their future schooling and later career path. These differences perpetuate the disparities still seen in the job market, particularly in women’s low representation in technical fields like engineering and computer science, which even further cements the gender-based wage gap. The number of children bullied because they wish to explore types of play that fall outside of these gendered ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ boxes also continues to rise.

The petition shows this advertisement as an example:

toysrus-smallAs you can see, in Toys ‘R’ Us’s world, only boys can play with science toys. As another example from the petition.

ldVruKhhsMxvaGE-556x313-noPadCooking labeled with pink and electronics with blue is again stereotyping, as if only women can cook and boys use electronics.

What’s interesting is the Swedish Toys ‘R’ Us catalog arms children with the ability to question outdated gender roles.

tumblr_me5brrqTsT1r9bhz8o2_r1_400tumblr_me5brrqTsT1r9bhz8o5_r1_400Check out the petition to support the issue and see if Toys ‘R’ Us will respond.