This is how Spain is now fighting against sexist child toys

gender roles

This is how Spain is now fighting against sexist child toys


Ads for dolls are mostly aimed at girls.

Ads for dolls are mostly aimed at girls.

Photo: YakobchukOlena / Getty Images / iStockphoto

Spain bans stereotypical children’s toys and wants to empower girls. More and more countries are putting an end to “sexist advertising”.

Madrid. Sparkling dolls and pink plush unicorns girlcars and action figures for guys – that should be the end of it in Spain. The Spanish government, which has more women than men and is one of Europe’s pioneers in gender equality policies, must fight gender equality toy called.

advertising, which is aimed only at girls or only at boys, is banned in the future. The reason: One-sided advertising, where children are convinced that there are typically feminine or masculine toys sexist.

This is the opinion of Alberto Garzón, Spain’s Minister for Consumer Protection. He sees in stereotypical toys the root of injustice between the sexes. Today’s toys, he says, will shape tomorrow’s society.




Doll commercials should also appeal to boys

“Play knows no gender,” Garzón says. The 36-year-old, himself the father of two daughters, managed to reach a binding agreement with the umbrella organization for the national toy industry through gentle pressure appointment close. Manufacturers are committed to gender-neutral product advertising. “In the future, advertising will contribute to equality between boys and girls,” says Garzón.

Probably the most important Rule in this agreement: “It is forbidden to distinguish between toys only for boys and only for girls.” So in Spain there are no more pink bibs with “princess“, and blue with the inscription” little genius “. All toys, whether it be a doll’s carriage or a racetrack, must be advertised in a gender-neutral manner. Also interesting:Spain is fighting against plastic – now also in restaurants


Garzón thinks even further. Also sexualization of toys is banned in the future. This includes, for example, clothing or presentation that is advertised as “sexy”. barbie dolls. Glorification of violence when advertising action figures is also no longer allowed. The agreement applies to all toy advertising aimed at children under 15 years of age.

The minister says he had to act. A study by the Catalan Broadcasting Council has shown: In 87 percent of advertising only girls appear for puppets, while boys are almost always explorers, adventurers and conquerors in commercials.

Lego no longer wants to categorize toys

“If we convey through advertisements to the girls that their toys are primarily about caring for and nurturing them, with the home world, then we are ultimately telling them as a society that they should also devote themselves to these tasks as adults.” such clichéer will not equality, but the classic division of roles between man and woman promoted.

More on the subject: Germany now has three genders – what does that mean?

Not only Spain, more and more countries and companies no longer tolerate clichéd attributions. In the US stateCalifornia Toy stores over a certain size must offer shelves or a separate department with gender-neutral products. The Danish company Lego announced last fall that they no longer wanted to categorize its toys worldwide by girls and boys.

The Spanish initiative has met with broad public approval in what used to be a traditional country. Spain has in recent years under the Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez to become a pioneer in the fight against discrimination of women against whom macho culture and developed for equality.

Minister Alberto Garzón, who campaigned against frequent consumption of meat and too much sugar during his term of office, knows, of course, that his well-meaning agreement weaknesses Have. Because it does not include the electronic video, console and mobile games with those who play an increasingly important role in the world of children and young people. Nevertheless, the agreement with the national toy industry is trend-setting for Europe. Few countries, he says, have been as consistent as Spain.



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