"This is truly sad and disturbing"
The company has been hit with accusations of racism this week after a promotional image showed a black child wearing a hoodie that read “Coolest monkey in the jungle”. The image was soon removed following the backlash and H&M has since issued an apology.
After The Weeknd ended his partnership with the clothing chain when he was “deeply offended” by the ad, now G-Eazy has cut ties from his own fashion line with H&M that was due for release on March 1.
“Over the past months I was genuinely excited about launching my upcoming line and collaboration with H&M,” G-Eazy wrote, sharing an adapted version of the image branding the child ‘the coolest king in the world’. “Unfortunately, after seeing the disturbing image yesterday, my excitement over our global campaign quickly evaporated, and I’ve decided at this time our partnership needs to end.
“Whether an oblivious oversight or not, it’s truly sad and disturbing that in 2018, something so racially and culturally insensitive could pass by the eyes of so many (stylist, photographer, creative and marketing teams) and be deemed acceptable. I can’t allow for my name and brand to be associated with a company that could let this happen.”
He added: “I hope that this situation will serve as the wake up call that H&M and other companies need to get on track and become racially and culturally aware, as well as more diverse at every level.”
“We sincerely apologize for offending people with this image of a printed hooded top,” a spokesperson for H&M has said following the controversy. “We believe in diversity and inclusion in all that we do and will be reviewing all our internal policies accordingly to avoid any future issues.”
They later: “We understand that many people are upset about the image. We, who work at H&M, can only agree. We are deeply sorry that the picture was taken, and we also regret the actual print. Therefore, we have not only removed the image from our channels, but also the garment from our product offering globally. It is obvious that our routines have not been followed properly.
“This is without any doubt. We will thoroughly investigate why this happened to prevent this type of mistake from happening again.”