Parents Upset Because Lego Doesn't Realize Young Kids Use Wheelchairs Too

When it comes to popular children's toys, Lego takes the gold. Seriously, who doesn't have at least one childhood memory that includes a colorful Lego set? Kids today don't know how good they have it considering the toy building-brick company provides more accessories and "I wish I had that growing up" pieces that encourage imaginative play. Too bad Lego's newest toy set has upset parents with disabled children.


At first glance, the Community People Set doesn't look out of the ordinary (it's OK if you see action figures for the Village People). The 20 LEGO DUPLO® figures represent people and occupations preschoolers will likely see in their communities, giving parents the platform to discuss important topics -- including gender and diversity.

So what's the problem, you might ask?

Take a look at the character in the wheelchair.

"We applaud Lego for producing a wheelchair-using Duplo figure," said Rebecca Atkinson, co-founder of the Toy Like Me Campaign, a parent-run group that challenges the toy industry for better representation of children with disabilities. "But it’s so disappointing that the only wheelchair-using figure across all Lego products is an elderly person being pushed along by a younger figure."

Sure there are seniors who might need a wheelchair to assist them with everyday tasks. We get that. Some, however, feel it sends the wrong message to young children in wheelchairs who are oftentimes forgotten when it comes to toy representation.

Toy Like Me-sters! This is a gentle nudge, a little tickle in the ribs, to say please please please phone a friend,...

Posted by Toy Like Me on Friday, July 31, 2015

Rebecca is petitioning Lego to fix the error of its ways on "There are 150 million children with disabilities worldwide," the petition states. "What are you saying to these children with disabilities and their peers by excluding them?"

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I'll be honest, if you didn't tell me what the problem was, I wouldn't have seen it -- which is one of the issues Toy Like Me hopes to address. In a society that fights so hard to have accurate depictions of people from different walks of life, perhaps it's time to see children in wheelchairs included.


Image via Lego 

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