Herald on Sunday Jul 26, 2009
Child advocates have slammed a risque range of baby clothes that created a storm of controversy in Australia and are now on sale in New Zealand. The T-shirts and suits are on sale in Australian chain Cotton On Kids’ 17 Kiwi stores and feature slogans including “I’m a tits man”, “The condom broke”, “I’m living proof my mum is easy” and “Mummy likes it on top”. Family groups and child psychologists in Australia said they sexualised children and called for them to be withdrawn.
National Council of Women of New Zealand president Elizabeth Bang agreed and said the slogans were “awful”. “We’ve noticed more and more of this and we think it’s time it stopped. There’s quite a lot of research showing the sexualisation of children can be harmful to their mental and physical health.” Moyna Fletcher, of anti-child abuse trust CPS, said the clothing exploits children for adults’ entertainment. Clinical psychologist April Trenberth, who works with child sex abuse victims, said the range seemed “cute” and “harmless”, but was actually “insidious and dangerous”.
A Cotton On Kids shop assistant in Auckland said a few shoppers had complained, but most were amused. A company spokeswoman in New Zealand was not aware of any complaints and directed enquiries to the company’s Melbourne headquarters. They did not respond, but in a statement to an Australian newspaper, Cotton On’s marketing manager said the range had attracted “sporadic complaints” and would not be withdrawn.
TAKE ACTION: Boycott their NZ stores and tell their head office of your intention http://www.cottonon.com.au/contact