Toy maker Mattel has introduced its first Barbie with Down’s syndrome in a bid to make its famous doll range more inclusive.
In a statement on Tuesday, Mattel said it had worked with the National Down Syndrome Society in the United States to make the doll, which has a shorter frame and longer torso than its other Barbies.
The new doll’s face is also a rounder shape, and has almond-shaped eyes, smaller ears and a flat nasal bridge, Mattel said.
“The doll’s palms even include a single line, a characteristic often associated with those with Down’s syndrome,” Mattel said.
The doll is dressed is a puff sleeved frock adorned with butterflies and flowers in yellow and blue – colours associated with Down’s syndrome awareness.
She wears a pink necklace with three upward chevrons representing the three copies of the 21st chromosome as well as pink ankle foot orthotics, Mattel said.
“Our goal is to enable all children to see themselves in Barbie, while also encouraging children to play with dolls who do not look like themselves,” Lisa McKnight, Executive Vice President and Global Head of Barbie & Dolls, Mattel, said in the statement.
Lego expects to begin selling toy building bricks made from recycled plastic bottles in 18 to 24 months.
Toymaker Mattel is encouraging kids to return Barbies, Matchbox cars and MEGA Bloks they no longer play with to the company for recycling into new toys. The goal of the company’s new ‘Playback’ program is to recover and reuse materials across all products and packaging by 2030, Mattel said as it announced the program this week.