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Threats Prompt Target to Pull Some LGBT-Related Merch

Move made to ensure worker safety and mitigate “volatile circumstances,” retailer claims

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Courtesy of Target

Target (Minneapolis) said it is removing some merchandise related to its LGBTQIA+ Pride Month celebration after it “experienced threats impacting our team members’ sense of safety and well-being while at work.”

“Given these volatile circumstances, we are making adjustments to our plans, including removing items that have been at the center of the most significant confrontational behavior,” the retailer said in a statement.

It did not say specifically what merchandise among the 2000 or so items involved in the promotion was sparking the controversy.

But in its coverage of the situation, The Guardian reported “among those [items] that attracted the most attention were ‘tuck-friendly’ women’s swimsuits that allow transgender women who have not had gender-affirming surgery to conceal their genitals.”

Items from Abprallen, which designs and sells occult- and satanic-themed clothing and accessories aimed at LGBTQIA+ consumers, have also created backlash, the London-based newspaper reported.

In addition, Target confirmed to The Guardian that it had moved Pride merchandise from the front of stores to the back in some southern U.S. locations, after confrontations and backlash involving some shoppers in those areas.

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“Our focus now,” Target said, “is on moving forward with our continuing commitment to the LGBTQIA+ community and standing with them as we celebrate Pride Month and throughout the year.”

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