Rebecca Atkinson, the founder of the #ToyLikeMe campaign for better disability representation in toys, believes the success of LEGO City’s Fun in the Park set shows an appetite for inclusive toys.
LEGO’s first wheelchair using Minifigure comes as part of the Fun in the Park set, and with it already sold out on LEGO.com, Atkinson believes this should alert toy firms to what customers are really after from toys today.
"I’m delighted to see the world’s first LEGO Minifigure with a wheelchair is finally on sale," Atkinson told ToyNews.
"It doesn’t come a minute to soon for 150 million disabled kids (not to mention lots of adult wheelchair-using Lego fans). It’s a great set because it perfectly intergrates all sorts of people in a fun setting. It’s very refreshing to see a toy wheelchair-user outside of a hospital set.
"I’m delighted that it’s already sold out on LEGO.com. I really hope this shows LEGO and other toy brands that times have moved on and customers want inclusive products, for all children, not just those with disabilites."
Atkinson will be speaking at this year’s Children’s Media Conference, joining a panel discussion on Representation along with Tree Fu Tom creator Dan Bays and Arklu founder Lucie Follett.
"I’m delighted to be taking #ToyLikeMe to the CMC this year to bring the issues of positive disabilty representation to heart of children’s industries," Atkinson told ToyNews.
"I’ll also be giving a ‘change makers’ speech about the success of #ToyLikeMe and why we collectively need to move the disability aesthetic on within children’s industries. It’s time to depart from tired stereotypes and medical association and create celebratory, fun, fantasy narratives. It’s time for fairies with wheelchairs and wizards with guide dogs."