(Facebook H&M)
(Facebook H&M)

H&M hires diversity leader in wake of 'racist hoodie' controversy

'We are listening'

Chelsea Ritschel
in New York
Wednesday 17 January 2018 22:18
Comments

In the wake of their latest controversy, Swedish fashion brand H&M has made the decision to hire a diversity leader - in the hopes the move will keep the company clear of further accusations of racism.

Announcing the decision on their Facebook page, the retail giant insisted that the move is meant to prove their “commitment to addressing diversity and inclusiveness is genuine.’

In the same post, the company reiterated that the recent incident was “entirely unintentional” but that it made them aware of their own influence as a brand.

They wrote the incident “demonstrates so clearly how big our responsibility is as a global brand.”

The post, which accompanied a picture reading: “We are listening,” has been shared only 48 times.

But from the comments, it appears many of H&M’s customers aren’t ready to forgive, or forget, just yet.

One person commented: “How many times can you apologise for the same thing? I feel it’s getting way out of hand now.”

Another wrote: “Too little too late...Never once was it a consideration. Not aforethought or afterthought. Only because of backlash and a possible deficit to your bottom line do you suppose to make a ‘change.’ We don’t believe you.”

However, others feel the company’s apology was enough to make amends for the racist advert.

The advert was deemed racist

One comment reads: “It was a mistake, we ALL make them and your apology seems genuine. Most companies would of hid or ignored the outrage, you guys got in front of it immediately and made adjustments. Love your product.”

The company’s announcement comes days after the young model’s parents revealed that they found nothing offensive about the advert.

Appearing on TV to discuss their son Liam’s safety after he was featured in the H&M ad wearing a sweatshirt that read “coolest monkey in the jungle,’ the couple also admitted that they have had to move from their home to keep their child safe after the controversy.

While H&M clearly missed the mark with this ad, hopefully, the hiring of a diversity leader will help guide the company in the future.

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