Fashion retailer H&M apologized on Monday for featuring a black child modeling a hoodie with a “coolest monkey in the jungle” slogan, saying it “believe[s] in diversity and inclusion in all that we do and will be reviewing our internal routines.”
The image, which appeared on the British version of H&M online store, was accused of being racist by hundreds of social media users on Sunday after the offending ad was screen-captured by blogger Stephanie Yeboah.
Whose idea was it at @hm to have this little sweet black boy wear a jumper that says ‘coolest monkey in the jungle’?
I mean. What. pic.twitter.com/6AJfMdQS4L
— Stephanie Yeboah (@NerdAboutTown) January 7, 2018
The Swedish company removed the ad, which appeared on its U.K. site, in response to the backlash. “We sincerely apologize for this image” H&M told TIME. “It has been now removed from all online channels and the product will not be for sale in the United States.””We believe in diversity and inclusion in all that we do, and will be reviewing our internal routines.”
Others on social media pointed out that two other sweatshirts in the same line, with one that said “survival expert,” were modeled by white children.