The British Retail Consortium hit back against the Lose the Lads' Mags campaign, saying that its members do not sell anything illegal and follow industry guidelines:
– British Retail Consortium statement
BRC members don't sell anything it isn't legal to sell and they have long followed joint industry guidelines, as well as taking their own independent voluntary action, to make sure that front covers which may concern some people are displayed discreetly.
Our members regard their stores as family-friendly environments which is why conversations with staff and customers about what they believe is appropriate will continue
You've been telling us what you think of today's call to retailers to ban lads' mags with naked or near-naked women on the cover:
– Arlene Fraser
Finally decency prevails: Childhood restored little girls and boys are not subjected to women as sexual objects.
– Mary Challoner
They should have a plain cover with the name of mag on it
– Robert Taylor
We have been through this many times before. This is why the top shelf was originally made to accommodate them. They then put them into plastic covers. Now put them into plain covers with just the name on. The women on these covers happily accept payment for the photos. Is this double standards?
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In a letter in the Guardian, 11 equal rights lawyers say there have been previous cases of staff suing employers over exposure to pornographic material at work. They are now calling on retailers to stop selling "lads' mag" publications:
– 'Lose the Lads' Mags' campaign
High-street retailers are exposing staff and, in some cases, customers to publications whose handling and display may breach equality legislation.
Displaying lads' mags and pornographic papers in 'mainstream' shops results in the involuntary exposure of staff and, in some cases, customers to pornographic images.
Every mainstream retailer which stocks lads' mags is vulnerable to legal action by staff and, where those publications are visibly on display, by customers.
Campaigners are urging high street retailers to remove magazines that display naked and near-naked images on their covers or face the risk of legal action.
The Lose the Lads' Mags campaign, by pressure groups UK Feminista and Object, says displaying publications in stores or requiring staff to handle such magazines could amount to sex discrimination or sexual harassment.