As part of an effort toward diversity and inclusion, Barbie announced it will release the “first-ever” doll with hearing aids in June, according to an article on the CNN website.
The line—to be launched in Wal-Mart, Target, and Amazon—will include a Ken doll with vitiligo and other dolls with a variety of body types. According to CNN, Barbie sought the expertise of educational audiology practitioner Dr Jen Richardson for her guidance on the hearing loss devices the doll would wear.
Related article: Mattel Launches New American Girl Doll with Hearing Loss
“I’m honored to have worked with Barbie to create an accurate reflection of a doll with behind-the-ear hearing aids,” Richardson was quoted as saying in a statement that appeared on the People Magazine website. “As an educational audiologist with over 18 years of experience working in hearing loss advocacy, it’s inspiring to see those who experience hearing loss reflected in a doll.”
“Barbie wholeheartedly believes in the power of representation, and as the most diverse doll line on the market, we are committed to continuing to introduce dolls featuring a range of skin tones, body types, and disabilities to reflect the diversity kids see in the world around them,” Lisa McKnight, Mattel’s Executive Vice President and Global Head of Barbie and Dolls, was quoted as saying in a statement on the People Magazine website.
“It’s important for kids to see themselves reflected in product and to encourage play with dolls that don’t resemble them to help them understand and celebrate the importance of inclusion,” she said.
Source: CNN, People Magazine
Image: Mattel website