The dolls – a boy and a girl with facial features with Down syndrome – will be available in New Zealand stores in time for Christmas.
The two dolls, known as Baby Charlie, are the latest additions to Kmart’s collection, which also includes an amputee doll, a visually impaired doll and a doll in a wheelchair.
While these aren’t the first dolls to have Down syndrome, the Kmart deals are significantly cheaper at $ 15 each.
John Gualtieri, Kmart retail director for Australia and New Zealand, said the company wants its customers to find products that they can truly identify with.
« To further develop and expand our representation of diversity in our toys and dolls to more accurately reflect people of different ages, genders, ethnicities, abilities and sexual orientations. ”
The move was commended by the Down Syndrome Association, who said it was great that the dolls will be more affordable and widely available so that such dolls will be easier for children to access.
The dolls have also been well received on social media by Kmart customers and parents of children with Down syndrome.
Australian blogger Brodee shared a picture of her three year old son Elijah with the dolls and the picture was titled “Yay for Inclusion !! Thank you Kmart. ”
The post went viral quickly and other Kmart fans have described the dolls as « beautiful » and « another big step towards inclusiveness ». .
Kmart launched its line of dolls with disabilities in September, but the concept is not new.
In 2013, the US retailer Toys R Us expanded the Journey Girls doll series with accessories such as wheelchairs and crutches.
And in 2016 Lego introduced a figure of a boy in a wheelchair – significantly, the figure was more likely to be found in a city park than in a hospital.
Down syndrome, Kmart Australia, New Zealand
World News – AU – Kmart introduces dolls with Down syndrome
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