They opened up a bank account in her name with it.
January 1, 2015 10:40 PM   Subscribe

Target ad features child with Down syndrome (San Francisco Chronicle)

Huffington Post has similar coverage with a bit more information:
"And while many others have shown tremendous support for Izzy's role in the campaign, the toddler herself seems pretty pleased with it, as well.

"'Whenever she sees the ad, either on television or in print, she smiles, points to herself, and says, "Izzy,"' Heather told Yahoo. 'Her photo is also on the wall of our local Target, so she likes that too.'"
Izzy is from Stillwater, Minnesota; the news report from a CBS affiliate. Izzy's mother is the head of her local chapter of the Down Syndrome Diagnosis Network, whom Target contacted when seeking child models with Down syndrome.
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome (19 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Other than wishing this weren't a rare enough occurrence as to warrant a news story, I think this is great.
posted by The Gooch at 10:57 PM on January 1, 2015 [8 favorites]

Agreed. Wishing this isn't news, but glad that Target worked with DSDN to make this happen. There are some good people and good organizations out there working on behalf of people with Down syndrome.

I'm always surprised, though, when I see advocates not employing "people first" language. I only mention it because the one appearance of the phrase "disabled child" reminded me of the many other appearances of more inclusive, appropriate language in the linked articles.
posted by vverse23 at 11:20 PM on January 1, 2015 [3 favorites]

Izzy is ridiculously cute and I am delighted to see her included in the campaign.
posted by Hermione Granger at 12:25 AM on January 2, 2015 [3 favorites]

love it!
posted by greenhornet at 1:00 AM on January 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

Very happy to see this happening. Izzy is adorable. If we must live with a constant stream of marketing, let there at least be some diversity. It's a smart move by the ad folks--kids love to feel included, and that means ALL kids. I'd like to see kids using prosthetics or mobility devices modeling as well. We have a neighbor with a five-year-old who uses an electric wheelchair; his smile alone could sell anything.
posted by kinnakeet at 1:16 AM on January 2, 2015 [3 favorites]

TGT also ran an ad with a 2 dad family in September. The teabagger CEO was kicked out in May; it looks like the new one doesn't share his politics.
posted by brujita at 1:30 AM on January 2, 2015 [6 favorites]

If we must live with a constant stream of marketing, let there at least be some diversity.

Yes, this. I do what I can to have a life with fewer ads in it, but I would like the ones I do see to be maximally diverse (and relatedly, to dial down the grossness).
posted by Dip Flash at 3:16 AM on January 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

Very cute ad. Izzy looks like she had a lot of fun, and I'm amazed any two year old could sit through hair and makeup!
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:41 AM on January 2, 2015 [2 favorites]

Honestly, the only thing I found offensive about this was that the toy, which appears to consist of just a few blocks, balls and wires, costs $50.
posted by The Gooch at 7:40 AM on January 2, 2015 [2 favorites]

Honestly, the only thing I found offensive about this was that the toy, which appears to consist of just a few blocks, balls and wires, costs $50.

My working theory is that for kids this young, you're not actually buying the toy for the kid herself/himself, but you're buying the toy for the parents, the idea being that they will take note of how much you spent on their little bundle.
posted by bitteroldman at 8:30 AM on January 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

The toy is a bit more involved than that, it has a base with more things to do:
posted by mulligan at 9:24 AM on January 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

Normalization is important. Our oldest son (who is now an adult), is severely intellectually disabled. It's obvious to anyone he meets. Even today in 2015, Jason draws uncomfortable stares from some people when we go out in public. I think most of those people aren't bad per se, they just lack experience with and exposure to people like Jason. The inherent difficulty that goes along with caring for him and keeping him safe in public places is greatly compounded by the unspoken but very strong societal pressure to keep him out of sight. It's very common to feel trapped in your home with your disabled child. Making exposure to people like Jason more of a mainstream experience would dissipate some of that discouragement.
posted by double block and bleed at 9:30 AM on January 2, 2015 [13 favorites]

Normalization is important....

Exactly. My cousin is pretty far down the Autism spectrum. What he wants more than anything is just to be treated like a normal guy. Anyone giving him shit in public gets a sound lashing from family members. I'm pretty thrilled that he grew up in a family that loves him and doesnt treat him as anything less than a human being.

(Now if he could just impart his smarts and memory to me. He can recall my wifes birthday quicker than I can, and shes my wife!)
posted by Twain Device at 9:37 AM on January 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

Metafilter: Normalization is importantđź’—
posted by The Legit Republic of Blanketsburg at 10:22 AM on January 2, 2015 [4 favorites]

I don't think this is necessarily new. I'm a 1970s kid, and I remember seeing kids with Down Syndrome on 1970s era Sesame Street with some regularity. What I do think is neat is that Izzy is placed into the ad with no self-congratulatory pat on the back from Target, no calling attention to itself, just an acknowledgment that kids with Down syndrome are kids too. That's the real change here.
posted by jonp72 at 10:40 AM on January 2, 2015 [2 favorites]

This is much better than my first reading of the headline, which was "Ad targeting child with Down syndrome"
posted by ymgve at 11:11 AM on January 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

I love this and want to see more of this type of model in advertising.

I'm not totally sure of the chronology of the movement (which has the hashtags #changingthefaceofbeauty and #15for2015 and #imready) that has arisen around this photo, but a number of Instagrammers in the special needs community are "challenging 15 of the nation's top retailers to include models with Down syndrome and other special needs in their advertising in 2015. " Basically the instagrammers are posting photos of their kids and calling (via tagging their instagram accounts in their photos) on major retailers to feature a greater diversity of models in their ads, aiming for 15 kids with special needs being featured in major advertising in 2015.

A few I've seen on Instagram:
Lily from @aperfectlily, who has down syndrome.
August from @MacyMakesMyDay, who also has down syndrome, as does his sister Macy.
Lilah of @dreambiglittleones, who has achondroplasia.
Sarah and Gabby from @heather__rodriguez (I think in this case she's either regramming stuff from others or is a photographer).

Those instagrammers (and many others) are also tremendously interesting to follow to learn more about down syndrome and anchondroplasia. And really stinking cute.
posted by urbanlenny at 11:29 AM on January 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

On a slightly different inclusive bent, I was startled and pleased to see Chantelle Brown, who has vitiligo, in Desigual's catalog this year. Campaigns she features in tend to play off her distinct skin spots, but hey, why not? They're beautiful (as anyone who has ever loved someone with vitiligo can tell you).
posted by gusandrews at 2:27 PM on January 3, 2015

Target has a history of doing this, which is as it should be.


One thing that is missing (and for which Target will never address) is that people with Down syndrome tend to have body proportions that differ quite a bit from the general population.

You example, shorter arms and legs paired with longer torsos.

It's hell finding tops that fits my daughter. Typically, Mrs. Plinth will find tops that fit my daughter's torso then cut the sleeves shorter. This works, but the shirts won't have cuffs anymore. The Duluth Trading Company make its business in part from selling shirts that are longer in the torso. I bought one shirt and cut the sleeves and serged the cuffs back on. PITA, but it worked. I appealed to them to maybe consider the Down syndrome demographic, but to no avail.

Recently, they started carrying women's long tail shirts in 3/4 sleeve, which is about right for Alice. I doubt it was in response to my letter, but you can hope.

Winter jackets are also a pain because we have to buy them early and then bring them to a tailor - that's too complicated for us.

We also rely on stretchy pants for her, but may look at Down's Designs in the future (no useful long sleeve shirts from them yet).

TL;DR - yay for awareness, boo for not selling clothes that actually fit.
posted by plinth at 2:46 PM on January 3, 2015 [2 favorites]

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