Tesco removes underwear posters

22 November 2013

BRADFORD TELEGRAPH & ARGUS

TESCO has withdrawn its posters featuring a scantily clad model from bus shelters near a church, mosque, and primary school, after a protest by the parish priest.

The Priest-in-Charge at St Martin and St Barnabas in the Heaton district of Bradford, the Revd Clare MacLaren (right, shown covering up the poster), wrote to her local paper asking whether the supermarket chain had given serious thought to its latest advertising campaign.

Large posters featured a photograph of the young woman in a bra, pants, and fishnet tights on seven sites within a quarter-mile of St Martin's.

"I regard myself as a fairly liberal, open-minded Christian," she wrote, "but there is a time and a place. . . Ours is a majority-Muslim community, where Christians and Muslims live and work happily and respectfully together. Both Christians and Muslims believe that it is right for men and women to dress with modesty in public, and would certainly not be seen at a bus stop in their underwear; so why should we have this image inflicted on us?

"These adverts reinforce some of the negative racial stereotypes that lie just below the surface among a small sector of our community."

Soon after her complaint, five posters were removed, including those outside her church, the mosque, and Heaton Primary School.

A spokesman at Tesco's headquarters, in Hertfordshire, said that he understood that posters, elsewhere in the city were still in place. "We do take things into account when we have a reaction like this.

"We try very hard to make sure they are not placed in areas such as churches, mosques, or schools, or areas where people could take offence. We are always willing to listen to people's views, and are happy to take action where necessary."

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