Target mailed a new product catalog to customers this month, and some recipients were pleasantly surprised to find a girl with disabilities prominently featured in it.
The child was dressed up as Elsa from the Disney movie "Frozen" and supported herself with crutches. She also wore a large smile.
Jen Spickenagel Kroll, a mother of a child with disabilities, posted on Facebook this past Sunday about the advertisement and her joy over it. Her post struck a chord, quickly racking up more than 5,000 shares.
"My daughter (with arm crutches and prosthetic legs) is going to FLIP when she sees this!" Kroll wrote. "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."
Jeff Jones, Target’s chief marketing officer, told The Huffington Post that it's important to the company to include people with disabilities in its advertising campaigns.
"At Target, our core beliefs regarding diversity and inclusivity are reflected in our advertising and in our business overall," Jones said in an email. "We’ve included people with disabilities in our advertising for more than 25 years and we’re humbled by the support we’ve received recently. We look forward to a day when diversity of all types in advertising is no longer a topic of discussion, but a way of life."
Previous Target campaigns have promoted inclusivity: In 1990, Target printed its first ad featuring a child with disabilities, and last year the company featured Izzy Bradley, a child who has Down syndrome, in an advertisement.
Parents across the country voiced their appreciation of Target's latest advertisement. Charmaine Cruz, the mother of a child with Down syndrome, told CBS Los Angeles,“If we don’t have images of people with special needs, then they don’t get a chance to be seen, to be accepted. It just opens the door for acceptance everywhere for them.”
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