TV personality and Singer Jamelia has appeared on This Morning today investigating why there are no dolls and toys that represent the ethnic minority children in the United Kingdom.
She took retailers to book and asked why most toys in the shops are aimed at white children? In one major retailer, she found that black dolls were stashed at the back of the shelves and not put on display, making it harder to find them in the store.
As a mother to two black girls, singer Jamelia says in the past she has struggled to find dolls that look like her girls in mainstream retailers.
Toys are a very important part of child development and the lack of diversity in the toys that black children play with has a detrimental effect on their identity and self-belief.
Speaking to Jamelia on ITV this morning, one little girl said, ‘We need more dolls that have black hair and dark skin’.
There is a lack of toys in the mainstream retailers that relate to children who are not white. This plants an inferiority complex in children as they are subconsciously being taught that only white dolls are beautiful.
40% of families in the UK are from a non-white background.
Children who are not white want to play with dolls and toys that look like them.
Toy giant retailer Toys R Us admitted to Jamelia that they have to improve in incorporating toys that represent non-white children. They said it’s difficult for them because all they do is buy toys from manufacturers. They are encouraging manufacturers to produce toys which represent all ethnicities.
However, at BBE Network we believe that it is up to us people of colour to make our own dolls for our children. We do not have to wait for mainstream retailors and manufacturers to represent us. We represent ourselves.
Fadzai, who is two years old has never owned a white doll loves dark-skinned dolls as they resonate with who she is.
BBE believes every child of colour should proudly own a doll or toy that has the same colour as their skin and has the same hair texture like their own.
Earlier on this week, BBE asked the question; If your little girl is black, why should she have a white doll?