Primark bows to pressure over padded bikinis for kids

Caroline Cassidy

Bargain high street chain Primark has been forced to bow to public pressure in the wake of outrage caused by their latest childrenswear addition.

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The budget fashion chain had introduced padded bikinis aimed at girls aged seven to eight years and parents, campaigners and politicians alike condemned the company.

Indeed David Cameron branded the product "disgraceful", telling the Daily Mail: "The sort of country I want is one where it is not just the Government that feels outraged about the early commercialisation and sexualisation of our children, but companies should stop doing it, they should take some responsibility."

And in view of the concern expressed by the majority of the country, Primark has indeed taken some responsibility.

A spokesman for the store said: "Primark has taken note of the concern regarding the sale of certain bikini tops for girls, a product line that sells in relatively small quantities. The company has stopped the sale of this product line with immediate effect."

And just to make us all feel better, they are even donating all the profits made from the padded bikinis to charity. But is it enough that they have apologised for the offense caused?

The £4 bikinis, until recently available in pink with gold stars or black with white polka dots, were clearly picked by a Primark buyer or specifically designed to entice pre-pubescent girls into an adult world that they do not yet understand.

Jeremy Todd, chief executive of parent advice site Parentline Plus, said: "The question has to be asked why it was deemed appropriate to sell such items at all."

What do you think? Should high street stores take more responsibility for sexualising children when they insist on putting such items on their shelves?