A new marketing campaign released by Sainsbury’s has gone viral for being completely tone-deaf about women’s safety. The adverts’ timing makes its sentiments even more ridiculous, as a culture of violent sexual misconduct by serving Metropolitan Police officers is brought to light.
Here we go again.
You’d think that with great efforts to improve inclusivity at big corporations, especially inside marketing departments, copywriting oversights like the one spotted in Sainsbury’s latest campaign would no longer be commonplace.
Yet here we. The British grocer has released a campaign suggesting that its slinky wrap dress is a perfect outfit for women to wear when having a ‘stroll after dark’. Thousands on Twitter have had a collective laugh in disbelief.
Any woman will tell you that donning a dress during broad daylight will attract leers and catcalls from male bystanders in public. They’ll also tell you that rather than ‘strolling,’ most of us are pacing and bracing ourselves when forced to walk in the dark.
Though it remains unclear whether the now-removed ad was co-signed by women working at Sainsbury’s, its timing is especially unfortunate. It has just been announced that 1,000 serving Metropolitan Police officers are being investigated for domestic abuse and sexual offences.
These endless instances of violence – and complete obliviousness in mainstream marketing campaigns – have left women wondering how long it will be before our safety concerns are taken seriously.
HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA THEY THINK WE STROLL IN THE DARK HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA pic.twitter.com/apzx88JcZQ
— Nathalie Gordon (@awlilnatty) January 12, 2023