Channel 4 is supporting a united anti-racism stance from Britain's supermarkets after a Sainsbury's campaign depicting a black family at Christmas attracted offensive and racist social media posts.
Supermarket brands unite against racism
Christmas is a time to come together. This year, we’re coming together with @AldiUK@asda@coopuk@IcelandFoods@LidlGB@marksandspencer@sainsburys@Tesco &@waitrose to stand against racism. If you’re not into that kind of thing, feel free to unfollow.#StandAgainstRacism#Adpic.twitter.com/EwKw3fdwHr— Channel 4 (@Channel4) November 27, 2020
- The combined action was prompted by an unseemly backlash against Sainsbury's Christmas ad, which saw bigots hijack Bing Crosby's 'I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas' to attack the depiction of a festive black family.
Channel 4 has aired the anti-racism message from Waitrose, Tesco, Iceland, Asda, Aldi, M&S, Lidl and Co-op in a collective show of brand support for Sainsbury's.
Suspending rivalries to promote equality, the concerted messaging hit viewers during prime-time slots this Friday in two bursts, the first scheduled for 20:15 during Bake Off: An Extra Slice and a second follow-up at 10.15pm during The Last Leg.
On-screen calls for unity were supported by the hashtag #StandAgainstRacism which invites individuals to make their voices heard.
Standing together against racism
Standing firm in the face of online abuse Rachel Eyre, head of brand communications and creative at Sainsbury’s, commented: “We strive to be an inclusive retailer and we’re proud to unite with our industry colleagues to stand up against racism.
“We’re passionate about reflecting modern Britain and celebrating the diversity of the communities we serve, from our advertising to the products we sell."
Verica Djurdjevic, chief revenue officer for Channel 4, added: “As an anti-racist organisation, we are incredibly proud to stand together with Sainsbury’s and our retail partners against racism, using our national platform to call out the unacceptable reaction to Sainsbury’s Christmas advert.”
The supermarket stramash feeds into a broader debate over on-screen diversity this Christmas which has seen both brands and agencies diversify their use of actors.
Big-name brands including Argos, Burberry and Disney have all represented minorities in a year dominated by the Black Lives Matter movement from the US.