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Balenciaga partners with children's group following backlash over ad featuring kids with racy teddy bears

Virus Outbreak Retail Pivot
Posted at 10:54 AM, Feb 09, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-09 10:54:02-05

Luxury fashion brand Balenciaga entered into a three-year partnership with the National Children’s Alliance following criticism for an ad that featured children holding teddy bears that were adorned with bondage gear.

Critics claimed Balenciaga was sexualizing children in the ad. The fashion brand apologized and pulled the ad, claiming it was never approved.

Balenciaga said it conducted a listening tour and engaged with several leading organizations and experts in the field of childhood trauma before announcing the partnership with NCA.

“Collectively, at Balenciaga we have listened and learned a lot through this experience, and we wanted to help, have a positive and lasting impact on children and their future who needed support but lacked access," says Cédric Charbit, president and CEO of Balenciaga.

Balenciaga says its partnership with NCA will enable the organization to train 2,000 professionals specializing in child abuse. It's estimated they will be able to help an estimated 55,000 children.

In addition, the NCA will provide education for Balenciaga about "child protection and actions adults can take to promote the safety and well-being of children."

The joint venture will also seek to raise public awareness about child abuse and how to protect children so they can live happy and healthy lives.