Target has had its share of controversies in the past – Photoshop fails, plus size clothing shown on pregnant women and objectifying T-shirts, to name a few – but now they’re garnering tons of attention for all the right reasons.
A new ad for the popular store features a group of kids dressed up in cute Halloween costumes. Front and centre is an adorable little girl dressed in an Elsa costume – and, oh yeah, she has arm crutches.
On Sunday, Grand Rapids, Mich. mom Jen Spickenagel Kroll took to Facebook to express her gratitude to the brand.
“Dear Target, I love you. Thank you for including a child with braces and arm crutches into your advertising campaign! And as Elsa, no less!,” she wrote. “My daughter (with arm crutches and prosthetic legs) is going to FLIP when she sees this! Including children with special needs into advertising makes them less of a spectacle to the general public when they venture out into the real world. Normalizing disabilities in children is PRICELESS.”
The post has since gone viral with thousands of shares and comments praising Target’s inclusive decision.
Families, advocates, and people with disabilities themselves are praising Target for its spirit of inclusion this Halloween.
“Target is committed to diversity and inclusion in every aspect of our business, including our advertising campaigns,” a spokesperson told the Daily Dot in an email. “Target has included people with disabilities in our advertising, including Halloween marketing, for many years and will continue to feature people that represent the diversity of communities across the country.”
This isn’t the first time the brand has been praised for children’s ads. Last year, the store featured Izzy Bradley, a sweet two-year-old with Down syndrome, in an ad released right around Christmas.
Izzy’s ad sparked the idea for the Change the Face of Beauty campaign, which called on retailers to include models with disabilities in their advertising. At this point, the campaign has committed more than one hundred companies to the cause.
At the time, Izzy’s mom told News Outlets that children with Down syndrome and other disabilities should be represented regularly in the media and that the notion should not be newsworthy.
“I want families who are new on a journey with a disabled child to see kids like Izzy and feel hopeful,” she said.