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California law requires gender-neutral zones in some stores

California on Saturday became the first state to say that large department stores must display products such as toys and toothbrushes in a gender-neutral manner, a victory for LGBT advocates who say that the pink and blue colors of traditional marketing methods are used for children. pressure to conform to gender stereotypes.

The new law, signed by Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom, does not outlaw traditional boys and girls classes at department stores. Instead, it says that larger stores should also have gender-neutral sections to display a “reasonable selection” of items “whether they have been traditionally marketed to girls or boys.”

It does not include clothing. The law only applies to toys and “childcare items,” which include hygiene and teething products. And it only applies to stores with at least 500 employees, which means small businesses are exempt.

Assemblyman Evan Low, a San Jose Democrat who wrote the bill, said he was “incredibly grateful” Newsom signed the bill this year – the third time a Democrat in the state legislature has tried to pass the law. , similar bills failed in 2019 and 2020.

Lou said he was inspired by the 10-year-old daughter of one of his employees, who asked her mother why some things in the store were “out of bounds” for her since she was a girl.


“We need to stop stigmatizing what is acceptable to certain genders and let children be children,” Low said. “My hope is that this bill will encourage more businesses in California and the US to avoid reinforcing harmful and outdated stereotypes.”

While California is the first state to require it, some large department stores have already changed how they display their products. Target Corp., with 1,915 stores across the United States, announced in 2015 that it would stop using certain gender-based signs in its stores.

The law was opposed by some Republicans and some conservative groups, who argued that the government should not tell parents how to shop for their children.

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