Target Plans To Reduce Pride Merchandise After Backlash

Businesses Across U.S. Weave Pride Themes Into Marketing Campaigns
AUSTIN, TEXAS - JUNE 06: A customer shops through Pride Month accessories at a Target store on June 06, 2023 in Austin, Texas. Businesses across the United States have begun advertising LGBTQIA+ apparel to mark this year's Pride Month. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)
Businesses Across U.S. Weave Pride Themes Into Marketing Campaigns AUSTIN, TEXAS – JUNE 06: A customer shops through Pride Month accessories at a Target store on June 06, 2023 in Austin, Texas. Businesses across the United States have begun advertising LGBTQIA+ apparel to mark this year’s Pride Month. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

OAN’s Abril Elfi
12:00 PM – Sunday, May 12, 2024

Target has stated that it will remove LGBTQ-themed merchandise from select stores in June in response to negative feedback on its sales during Pride Month last year.

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Target intends to provide the entire product line online, but is currently reviewing store-level data to determine which physical locations will stock the merchandise.

According to Bloomberg, Target is expected to carry the merchandise in roughly half of its nearly 2,000 US locations. 

The action follows Target’s removal of several items, including some transgender swimsuits, from its LGBTQ+ themed collection last year due to negative feedback from customers and altercations between patrons and staff in certain stores. Target attributed a portion of its second-quarter sales decline to the backlash.

Last year, Target started selling a “tuck-friendly” bathing suit in its LGBTQ Pride apparel line that appeared to be intended for children, which infuriated conservative customers.

A Target representative declared on Thursday that the company was dedicated to helping the LGBTQIA+ community all year long, not just during June’s Pride Month.

According to the spokesperson, the Minneapolis-based retailer will continue to be present at regional Pride events in Minneapolis and across the nation. It will also provide a selection of products for Pride Month that are “curated based on guest insights and consumer research” in select stores and online.

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