Primark in hot water with mums over ‘awful’ message on kids’ T-shirts

High street giant Primark has found itself in hot water with parents over ‘awful’ messages on kids’ t-shirts.

The t shirt logos have gone viral on Twitter after one woman branded them ‘sexist’.

The shopper thought the t-shirts to be ‘sexist’, and one parent even branded them ‘rage inducing’.

Kate Long, a teacher and novelist, shared a Twitter thread condemning the “hugely sexist messaging” she found on many of the children’s clothes.

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She shared images of the tops in the girls and boys’ section of the retail store to illustrate her point.

During a visit to Primark in Chester, she shared images of tops for girls that had printed on them phrases such as: “Be kind”, “Kindness always wins”, “Grateful, humble and optimistic” and “Be good, do good” .

She also shared images of the messages on the boys’ clothes, which were said to be more ambitious and self-assured.

One read: “Change the game. Rewrite the rules. Go for it. Born to win.”

Another read: “Explore. Nothing holding you back.”

Kate, 58, the author of eight novels, wrote: “Can anyone spot a difference in tone here? A difference in the narrative? Boys are awesome in themselves and don’t need to consider anyone else.

“Boys are about doing and girls are about feeling. Boys take what they want; girls consider others. The message to little girls is to be compliant and passive.

“Always think of others. Put on a pleasant, smiling face, for that is your job in the world.

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“It’s incredibly sexist and outdated and unhelpful to both boys and girls. Stop telling girls their place is to serve others! Stop telling boys they should have nothing to do with kindness and love!

“What are you, a throwback to the 1950s??”

Other Twitter users were quick to agree.

@MikeOmmanney said: “I agree with what you are saying, I think these messages on clothes are pretty awful. The boys clothing are also rather dull. Btw I’m not a father but I wouldn’t want to buy these for my daughter either. Tbh the adult clothing isn’t any better.”

Zitah M said: “Bloody hell! What a terrifying amount to being told what to think and how to behave there is for our daughters to contend with. Tempted to print a “just do one” top for my girl, or perhaps “I’ ll think what I like but, you know, thanks for the input” delivered sarcastically.”

@rolfe_louise said: “This is such an important thread! Unconscious bias is everywhere! I spent my whole childhood pushing against traditional ‘girl stuff’. I’m 43! I can’t believe this is still the state of it. I teach and one 9 yo last week told me a nurse is a ‘girl doctor’.

@thelastnameleft replied: “It’s rage inducing, I posted a few ranty posts a while back. Not that I like buying primark stuff but their ‘boy range’ is much more appealing to my dinosaur and truck loving daughter. A few highstreet baby ranges seem to be gender neutral .. till about 6 months anyway.”

A Primark spokesperson said: “Inclusivity really matters to us.”

They continued to state that Primark sells a “broad range of styles”, and that it had removed gender-specific labels on its kids and baby ranges in recent years.

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They added: “However, we are always learning, we welcome customer feedback and will continue to look at where we can do more.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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