VICTORIA — Halloween costumes for preschool girls that depict police officers and firefighters in sexualized skin-tight uniforms have a Victoria mom fuming at thrift store Value Village.
Raina Delisle said she saw the shiny costumes with short skirts when she was shopping for her daughter, yet the same version for four-to-six-year-old boys looked like the real thing.
Delisle said that costume and others in the store send young girls the message that their bodies are more important than their brains and that they can be objectified.
“There was even a pumpkin costume with a lace-up corset, and a very sexy Mini Mouse,” she said. “Not only are they inappropriate for trick or treating, they’re inappropriate on so many levels.”
Delisle contacted the store’s customer care line at its headquarters in Bellevue, Wash., where the store goes by the name Savers, but got no response.
But when she wrote back in her capacity as a freelance journalist, Value Village responded with an apology and a promise to pull the costumes from shelves.
“We’ve taken the recent comments surrounding certain Halloween costumes sold in our stores very seriously and as such are removing this merchandise from our sales floors,” Value Village said in a statement.
“We apologize to those who were offended and as we move forward, we will evaluate all customers and packaging keeping this specific customer feedback in mind.”
Delisle said she’s pleased that Value Village has taken action and that the national chain has set a good example for other retailers. But she would like to know what will be done with the offensive costumes and if they’ll be sold next year.
“I would be very disappointed if they sold them again but I don’t think so because they’re getting such positive feedback.”
Target recently felt the heat of public opinion with its sale of children’s pyjamas — the girls’ version emblazoned with the words “I Only Date Heroes,” and the boys’ one reading “Future Man of Steel.”