Marks and Spencer changes name of Midget Gems following campaign

Midget Gems

Marks and Spencer changes name of Midget Gems following campaign

Marks and Spencer has changed the name of their Midget Gems sweets to ‘Mini Gems’ after a campaign highlighted how offensive the name was to people with dwarfism.

The campaign was led by a Liverpool academic, Dr Erin Pritchard, a lecturer in disability studies at Liverpool Hope University.

She argued that the word ‘midget’ is a form of hate speech.

She wrote in Big Issue North: “Often referred to by people with dwarfism as the m-word, it is a term derived from the word midge, meaning gnat or sandfly.

“Its origin automatically dehumanises people like me.

“It was a term popularised during the Victorian freak show, where many disabled people, including people with dwarfism, were oppressed and exploited.”

M&S seemed to agree as they have now rebranded their sweets to ‘Mini Gems’ to become more inclusive for their shoppers.

An M&S spokesperson reportedly said: “Following suggestions from our colleagues and the insights shared by Dr Erin Pritchard, we introduced new Mini Gem packaging last year, which has since been rolled out to all of our stores.”

Tesco has also been considering the name change due to the campaign.

A spokesperson for the supermarket reportedly said: “We are a diverse and inclusive retailer and we would not want any of our products to cause offence.

“We are grateful to Dr Pritchard for bringing this to our attention.”

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Lauren joined the Gi Media team in August 2021.