Toy store catalogues 'too white' in Sweden

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Toy store catalogues 'too white' in Sweden
Toys R Us is one of the companies being criticized. Photo: TT

Four major toy companies have come under fire for failing to include photos of non-white children in their catalogues in Sweden.


BR Leksaker, Toys R Us, Leklus and Lekia's catalogues were analysed by Swedish newspaper Metro, which spotted just two photos of non-white children in one of the publications and none in any of the other directories.
The catalogues are packed with photos of white children playing with toys and other potential Christmas presents.
Swedish campaign group Equalisters, which aims to correct imbalances of ethnic minority and gender representation in media, culture and business, has criticized the findings. It says the brochures fail to reflect diversity in Sweden, where around a fifth of the population now has roots outside of Sweden.
"These catalogues are too white. I think it's really sad for non-white children. I think this kind of thing can affect their sense of what they can become and do in the future and how welcome they feel in Sweden," Equalisters chairperson Seher Yilmaz told The Local.
She said that parents of white children should join the organization's campaign efforts.
"Think about how you would feel if people who looked like your children were never seen anywhere in the media," she added.
"It is up to everyone to change things. We need to reflect the way Sweden really looks today in the media, in movies and in business".
Swedish toy companies have previously been praised for being among the first to reject gender stereotypes, with some including photos of girls holding toy guns and boys pushing shopping trolleys.
Metro said it was seeking a response to the latest race allegations from all the companies concerned.
Top Toy, which has its headquarters in Denmark, owns BR Leksaker and the franchise for US toy giant Toys R Us. The Local was unable to reach the press team in Denmark after 4pm on Monday.


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