A Georgia mom is fighting for children with special needs to be included in advertising after images of her son with Down syndrome were rejected by a modeling agency.
Meagan Nash recently told The Huffington Post that after she submitted photos of her son Asher Nash for a casting call for Carter’s, Inc. she followed up with the modeling agency, only to be told that her son’s pictures wouldn’t be considered because the company “didn’t specify special needs” in their request.
“My first thought was how in the world does she know they don’t want a child with a disability if they haven’t even see his picture?” she said.
After Nash pointed out why it was wrong not to submit her son in an understanding email exchange, the owner saw the mom’s perspective and agreed that she should submit Asher for the casting. She has also assured Nash she has continued submitting him for other castings.
Nash said she pointed out to the agency that excluding children with special needs is wrong, the agency agreed to submit Asher’s pictures for the casting call, in addition to other castings.
But the incident led Nash to start a social media campaign for companies to be more inclusive in their advertising. Nash took to Facebook to showcase her son’s pictures and share what took place. Asher’s story quickly went viral.
“A lot needs to change in the advertisement world and people need to realize that babies, children and adults with disabilities deserve to be in advertisements just as much as a typical person does,” Nash said.
Mash wrote that she wants her son to model for OshKosh B’Gosh, whose parent company is Carter’s, Inc. The company reached out to Nash to set up a meeting with her family.
In a statement provided to the Huffington Post, a spokesperson for OshKosh B’Gosh said the company “appreciates the importance of representing the diversity of our customers in our advertising.”
“We look forward to meeting with Asher and his family, as well as taking steps to enhance the representation of diverse children in our marketing,” the spokesperson added.
Nash and Asher appeared on ABC's "Good Morning America" Sunday to share their story: