Move comes following months of pressure from two campaign groups…
Supermarkets to cover up newspaper front pages over fears children could be corrupted by graphic pictures and even headlines
•Waitrose and Tesco will roll out new display cases for newspapers
•They will keep some front pages out of the eye line of children
•Move comes following months of pressure from two campaign groups
Two of Britain’s biggest supermarkets have announced that they will cover up the front pages of newspapers over fears that children are being exposed to graphic pictures and headlines.
Waitrose and Tesco have said that they are working on new display methods that will show only the mastheads of some newspapers – keeping explicit content out of the eye line of children.
The move comes following months of pressure from campaign groups No More Page 3 and Child Eyes, who have heralded the decision a victory.
Changes: Tesco and Waitrose have said that they are working on new display methods that will show only the mastheads of some newspapers – keeping explicit content out of the eye line of children. (File image)
Both groups expressed concern at sexualised images of women and other unsuitable images being presented at such an easily-accessible height. They also argued that explicit and sensationalist headlines shouldn’t be displayed so prominently.
Tesco said that it is working on new ‘display cubes’ that will only display the names of newspapers in vertical panels along the side of the unit. Current cases allow the whole front page to be seen.
A spokesman for the supermarket had made the decision after consulting with customers and campaigners.
He confirmed that all large outlets, known as Extra and Superstore shops, will receive the new display units by the end of November 2014.
Tesco’s Customer Experience & Insight Director, Tracey Clements, said that she thought the new units would ‘strike the right balance for everyone’.
She said: ‘We are first and foremost a family retailer and it’s important we do everything we can to promote the right environment in store.
We are first and foremost a family retailer and it’s important we do everything we can to promote the right environment in store.
Tracey Clements, Tesco’s Customer Experience & Insight Director
‘We’ve asked our customers what they think about the issue and we have spoken to campaigners. The change we’re making will strike the right balance for everyone.’
A Waitrose spokesman said: ‘We’ve been working on this for some time and will soon be changing our newspaper fixtures so we can display some newspaper covers out of the eye line of children.’
He added that the changes will be made ‘soon’ but did not specify when this would be.
Founded in 2012, Child Eyes campaigns to stop sexualised, sexist and damaging images being displayed at child height in shops and public spaces.
Co-founder Claire Riseborough, along with representatives from No More Page 3, consulted with Tesco on the decision. She also revealed that that the group is arranging to meet with Waitrose next week.
She told MailOnline: ‘We are absolutely thrilled that Tesco has made this huge decision to change the way they display newspapers.
Graphic: Child Eyes argues that newspapers are frequently displayed at children’s eye level, often right next to the comics that children are drawn to, and use easy-to-read words which catch their attention. (File image)
‘It is also fantastic to hear from Waitrose today that they too will be following suit, we are arranging a meeting with them next week.
‘This is a real victory for all the supporters of the Child Eyes Campaign, who have been trying to make their voices heard on this issue for so long.
‘We’re feeling really positive and excited that the other supermarkets, and then also smaller shops will follow on to make the UK more family friendly.
A spokeswoman from No More Page 3 added that the move wasn’t just about protecting children – explaining that adult shoppers often felt that the offensive images and language couldn’t be avoided.
Stephanie Davies-Aria told MailOnline that the group was ‘thrilled’ with Tesco’s decision to change their display units.
She said: ‘We are really happy that they have taken a step that is realistic for them’.
Originally written By STEPHANIE LINNING