A Black Kentucky mother called out retail giant Walmart after she discovered Black dolls were priced higher than white dolls, WCPO reported.
It all started when Asheria Brown wanted to look for a "more diverse" doll set for her daughter. When Brown found a Black doll set online at Walmart.com, she claims the set was over 50% more expensive than the white doll set.
"There are seven Black babies and there are seven white babies. But one set is $39.97; the other is $25," The mother of three pointed out. Reporters also provided a screenshot from Brown, which shows two Kid Connection 48-Piece Doll Sets. The Black set costs $14.97 more than the white one.
At first, Brown thought it was just an isolated issue. Unfortunately, her suspicions were confirmed when she noticed the same price difference across different stores.
"The problem, I believe when we look at these discrepancies in pricing is that toy manufacturers do not produce Black dolls in proportion to the number of people in the human population," Brown says.
A Walmart spokesperson told WCPO the company lowered the price on select toys, including the white verison of the dolls, to sell more:
“Unfortunately, we overlooked the impact these changes would have on similar items. This was an unintentional error and we sincerely apologize to anyone it may have offended,” the spokeswoman said. She also said price adjustments have been made to both sets and now the prices are the same.
A similar incident happened in 2010, except a Black Barbie doll was priced cheaper than the white counterpart at a Louisiana Walmart, according to ABC News.
"To prepare for (s)pring inventory, a number of items are marked for clearance... Both are great dolls. The red price sticker indicates that this particular doll was on clearance when the photo was taken, and though both dolls were priced the same to start, one was marked down due to its lower sales to hopefully increase purchase from customers," another Walmart spokesperson explained at the time.