Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Mayor of London bans adverts that “demean” women and represent unrealistic body types

beach-body-ready.jpg

London’s new mayor, Sadiq Khan, has said he will be cracking down on “unhealthy” and “unrealistic” body image advertisements on TfL properties.

The move comes a year after controversy surrounded a series of posters pasted in tube stations across the city that asked women if they were ‘beach body ready’, whilst suggesting that – if they weren't – they buy some slimming powder.

The Protein World adverts were ruled ‘not offensive’ by the ASA, despite the fact that they hit a sour note with thousands of Londoners. Seventy thousand people signed a petition campaigning for their removal, and a further number staged a protest in Hyde Park.

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan

Today, Khan announced that – from next month - TfL will no longer allow any adverts to be displayed that could ignite body confidence issues – especially among young people. The move is one which he’d previously hinted about in a London Mayor Ask a Feminist special

Khan says: “As the father of two teenage girls, I am extremely concerned about this kind of advertising which can demean people, particularly women, and make them ashamed of their bodies. It is high time it came to an end.

“Nobody should feel pressurised, while they travel on the Tube or bus, into unrealistic expectations surrounding their bodies and I want to send a clear message to the advertising industry about this.”

tube

The policy does not ban all images of people in underwear, but is expected to affect around 12,000 adverts a year on tubes, at train stations and in bus shelters. Khan claims there will be no impact on TfL’s income, which was £170 million last year.

Graeme Craig, TfL Commercial Development Director, says: “Our customers cannot simply switch off or turn a page if an advertisement offends or upsets them and we have a duty to ensure the copy we carry reflects that unique environment. 

“We want to encourage great advertising that engages people and enhances the transport network.”

Related

Tale-of-Tales-still1.jpg

Watch Salma Hayek on her memories of the late Prince

heels work.jpg

Forced to wear heels at work? MPs want to hear from you

stonewallflagtout.jpg

Making a stand against hate: UK unites to support Orlando

549409285.jpg

Take the plunge at the world’s 10 most beautiful diving spots

ALL.jpg

Meet the most inspiring women on Instagram

Coffee lady original_clean.jpg

Spending 20 minutes with this app could boost your career

iphone happiness.jpg

Digital detox be gone: how your iPhone could make you happy

biden 2.jpg

US Vice President writes moving open letter to Stanford rape survivor

Linda Rodin x.jpg

“I've never felt defined by a relationship”: the joys of being single

Comments

More

Samantha Baines: “It’s time to leave our vaginas the hell alone”

The Call the Midwife star has her say on vaginal beauty treatments

by Kayleigh Dray
26 May 2017

Ramadan: The best places to break your fast in London

These London restaurants provide late night openings and special iftar menus

26 May 2017

10-year-old survivor’s letter to Ariana Grande is beyond beautiful

“I really hope you’re not too scared”

by Kayleigh Dray
26 May 2017

It’s official: this easy email hack is guaranteed to boost read rates

Make your emails stand out in your recipient's inbox with one simple trick

by Jasmine Andersson
26 May 2017

Fathers pay more attention to daughters than sons, new study shows

Dads are also "more emotionally engaged" with girls

by Anna Brech
26 May 2017

Men are totally devastated by this women-only Wonder Woman screening

Who knew they were such big fans of Diana Prince?

by Moya Crockett
26 May 2017

Dog breaks into studio to help reporter read the news

The internet is obsessed with this live news blooper (and for good reason)

by Kayleigh Dray
26 May 2017

“Get over yourself”: gymnast hits back at stranger who judged her arms

Alexandra Raisman responds to “rude and uncomfortable” incident

by Anna Brech
26 May 2017

Fighting for their rights: the heroic teens battling period taboos

"I wasn’t allowed to comb my hair, look in the mirror, attend school, read and write."

by Sarah Biddlecombe
25 May 2017

Twitter responds to terror threat level the only way it knows how

#BritishThreatLevels showcases the self-deprecating humour we Brits seem to love

by Amy Swales
25 May 2017