January 2, 2012 10:13 PM

Target includes Down syndrome in ad

Target Is 'Down' With Down Syndrome: 5 Things Target Said By Saying Nothing At All

target ad down syndrome model kid child

If you were browsing through this week's Target ad you may have passed right over the adorable little boy in the bright orange shirt smiling at you on page 9!  And if so, I'm glad!

The reason I'm glad?  Well, that stylish young man in the orange shirt is Ryan. Ryan just so happened to have been born with Down syndrome, and I'm glad that Target included a model with down syndrome in their typical ad! :)

This wasn't a "Special Clothing For Special People" catalog.  There wasn't a call out somewhere on the page proudly proclaiming that "Target's proud to feature a model with Down syndrome in this week's ad!"  And they didn't even ask him to model a shirt with the phrase, "We Aren't All Angels" printed  on the front.

In other words, they didn't make a big deal out of it.  I like that.

5 Things Target Said By Not Saying Anything

down syndrome model target ad boy ad

Even though Target didn't make a big deal out of the fact they used a boy with Down syndrome as a model in their ad, they said plenty.  They said the same things that Nordstrom did when they used Ryan as a model in their catalog this past summer.  I could list a hundred things Target said by running this ad, let me give you 5 that immediately come to mind:

  1. They said that people born with Down syndrome deserve to be treated the same as every other other person on this planet.
  2. They said that it's time for organizations to be intentional about seeking creative ways to help promote inclusion, not exclusion.  (It's no accident that Target used a model with Down syndrome in this ad; it was an intentional and proactive decision.)
  3. They said that companies don't have to call attention to the fact that they choose to be inclusive in order for people to notice their support for people with disabilities.  In fact, by not making a big deal out of it they are doing a better job of showing their support for the special needs community.

Read the rest at Noah's Dad

Posted in Down syndrome, Inclusion | Permalink


The other day while I was travelling in India, in a Benetton store and saw ads on the wall in baby section with models who had ds. I only noticed because of your blog of course and it made me think that you would have liked seeing those photos.

Posted by: Anar | January 3, 2012 12:21 AM

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