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Target will stop using 'boys' and 'girls' gender-based signs in some departments


The toy aisles at Target will soon no longer be designated as for "boys" or "girls."

The Minneapolis-based retailer announced Friday it's moving away from gender-based signage in its stores, and gave the examples of the toys section (which will also stop using colored paper behind shelves that is often tied to a gender, such as blue, yellow, green or pink) and the bedding section.

The reason, Target says, is the company never wants customers "to feel frustrated or limited" by how items are presented, and over the past year the company has heard "important questions" about what signage is and isn't needed.

In fact in June, an Ohio mother's tweet regarding a Target sign that labeled toys "Building Sets" and "Girls' Building Sets" was retweeted thousands of times.

A number of social media users quickly announced their support, but Target issued a statement saying the signage was a result of testing that showed customers preferred that type of information to help make shopping decisions.

On Friday, Target said that decision-making component is still applicable in some departments, but not all.

"In some cases, like apparel, where there are fit and sizing differences, it makes sense. In others, it may not," the news release says. "... [W]e know that shopping preferences and needs change and, as guests have pointed out, in some departments like Toys, Home or Entertainment, suggesting products by gender is unnecessary.

"We heard you, and we agree."

Target teams are currently looking at departments where gender-based signs can be phased out. The company says you'll start seeing those changes over the next few months.

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