In case you needed proof that there’s no age limit on inspiring change, a 5-year-old girl just got Gap to agree to create a gender-neutral line for kids.
According to an editorial written by her mom in the Washington Post, Alice wondered why there weren’t more options in the girls's section (the pink-filled clothing offerings in Gap’s girls’ section just weren’t cutting it for her). So, she decided to do something about it, and dictated a letter asking the company if it might be willing to ditch the “boys” versus “girls” sections, or add some sort of a gender-neutral section that worked for everyone.
“I like cool shirts like Superman and Batman shirts and race car shirts, too,” she wrote. “All your girls’ shirts are pink and princesses and stuff like that. The boys’ shirts are really cool. They have Superman, Batman, rock ’n’ roll, and sports. What about girls who like those things, like me and my friend Olivia? Can you make some cool girls’ shirts, please? Or, can you make a ‘no boys or girls’ section—only a kids’ section?”
To Alice and her mom’s surprise, a few weeks later a letter arrived from Gap CEO Jeff Kirwan, telling her, simply: “You are right.”
The letter went on to say that Gap tried to offer a “wide range of styles and choices for girls and boys,” including a selection of girls’ tees with dinosaurs, firetrucks, sharks, footballs, and some of our superheroes. But Kirwan acknowledges that the company can “do a better job offering even more choices that appeal to everyone,” and says that he’s going to work with designers to create some more pieces that kids like Alice will like. He also sent her some free T-shirts, which is pretty cool.
When Alice’s mom read her the letter, and explained that it was from the man who owned the entire company, her response was simply, “Whoa.”
Gap is joining Target and Land’s End (two brands that Alice loves) in offering more inclusive options in their kids’ section, as well as grown-up brands like H+M and 69. It’s TBD when Gap will launch its gender-neutral line, but it’s definitely an important step in the right direction. Plus, it’s promised to make a Chewbacca shirt, which is a really, really important fashion moment.
This story originally appeared on Teen Vogue.
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