Toymaker Hasbro is removing a Trolls World Tour doll from the shelves of major retail stores following an online petition that claims the doll encourages child abuse and pedophilia. The petition was created by concerned parent, Jessica McMains, and names Amazon, Walmart, Target, and other major retailers.
The toy company announced that it will remove the “Trolls World Tour Giggle and Sing Poppy” doll that was released as part of the movie merchandising after the petition garnered more than 160 thousand signatures from outraged parents and supporters.
The doll, which is a rendition of the little girl troll, Poppy, is designed to sigh and giggle when a button is pushed. In this case, the button that prompts the toy to respond was placed under the doll’s skirt and between her legs. Advocates for the removal of the toy argued that the placement of the button sent signals to small children that having this area of the body touched is pleasurable, which in effect grooms children to tolerate sexual touching, pedophilia and sexual abuse.
Julie Duffy, a Hasbro spokeperson told The Providence Journal,
This feature was designed to react when the doll was seated, but we recognize the placement of the sensor may be perceived as inappropriate.
This was not intentional and we are happy to provide consumers with a replacement Poppy doll of similar value through our consumer care team. We are in the process of removing the item for purchase.