All posts in Campaign news

Tackling gender stereotypes in early childhood: Let Toys Be Toys joins expert commission

We’re delighted to be taking part in the Commission on Gender Stereotypes in Early Childhood, launched this week by gender equality campaigning charity The Fawcett Society.

Chaired by the Director of the UCL Institute of Education, Professor Becky Francis and Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Fatherhood, Rt Hon David Lammy MP the commission will bring together experts in parenting, education, and the commercial sector as well as campaigners committed to tackling gender stereotypes, including representatives of the National Education Union, National Childbirth Trust, Usborne Books, Muslim Women’s Network, as well as Let Toys Be Toys. Read more…

Could a new rule make advertisers dump stereotypes?

The Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) is consulting on a new rule, aiming to tackle gender stereotyping in advertising. Here’s how we’re planning to respond – you can submit your own thoughts to the consultation until Thursday 26 July (tips below).

The CAP and BCAP codes set out the principles that the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) uses to judge advertising. Following the ASA’s report last year, which gathered evidence of the damage caused by gender stereotyping, ASA now intends to come up with a workable new rule and supporting guidance to act against ads that cause harm or offence due to stereotyping.

While we welcome the proposed new rule, we feel the proposed supporting guidance can do more to promote better practice. And we recognise that the real solution lies in more creativity from the ad and toy industries. Read more…

Christmas toy catalogues

Most toy catalogues still play to stereotypes – new research

Despite a few positive signs, our new research shows that the promotional images used in toy catalogues represent children’s play along highly stereotyped lines, with only a handful of boys shown with dolls, and boys four times as likely to be seen playing with cars or other vehicles.
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Top with dinosaur skeleton, label 'Boys and girls'

John Lewis Boys and Girls clothes

There’s been a lot of media attention to John Lewis’ announcement of a commitment to avoid gender stereotypes – here’s our take.

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No more boys and girls? Really?

We’re looking forward to tonight’s BBC2 documentary ‘No more boys and girls’. Here’s why we wish they’d picked another title.

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words used in TV toy ads featuring girls: most prominent words magic, fun, beautiful, princess, glitter, style, hair, sparkle

Tougher guidelines on stereotypes in adverts

Let Toys Be Toys welcomes the ASA report which confirms many of the things that we have campaigned on over the last five years. We are delighted about a new tougher stance on damaging gender stereotypes in advertising. Read more…

Yes, we do like Dear Zoo

Many of us have copies at home and have enjoyed reading it to our children (yes, even when it was for the 179th time!). So if you’ve read in The Sun and the MailOnline linking us with calls to get rid of it, please be reassured that this isn’t the case, and that the quote from one of our campaigners was manufactured.

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Stereotypes rule in toy catalogues – research findings

Our new research shows that the promotional images used in toy catalogues fall back on the same old tired stereotypes, with only a handful of boys shown with dolls, and girls accounting for just 11% of the children shown with cars or other vehicles. Read more…

Girls and Boys toy labels on the way out – survey results

Our survey of toy stores and websites has found ‘girls toys’ and ‘boys toys’ signs and website navigation options are on the way out. But what more do retailers need to do to allow children to choose their interests for themselves?

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Covers of toy catalogues

Progress from toy retailers – time for manufacturers to catch up

Our research this year shows that retailers have made big strides forward in letting toys be toys, with boy/girl signage on the way out, and more imaginative adverts and promotional imagery. It’s another picture from toy manufacturers, whose packaging, ads and catalogue images still rely on stereotypes.

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