Burberry Apologizes for Designing a Hoodie With a Noose Around the Neck 2/25/2019

Nationwide — Fashion brand Burberry has apologized for designing a hoodie with a noose around the neck which was showcased during its London Fashion Week show. The design, which received harsh criticism online even from one of the brand’s own models, has already been pulled out from the collection, the fashion house said.“We are deeply sorry for the distress caused by one of the products that featured in our A/W 2019 runway collection,” Burberry CEO Marco Gobbetti said in a statement provided to CNN.

“Though [the] design was inspired by the marine theme that ran throughout the collection, it was insensitive and we made a mistake,” he continued.

Liz Kennedy, the model who wore the hoodie on the show, was the first to express criticism about the noose. She said she tried to object on having the noose placed on her neck, but her concerns were just dismissed.“Suicide is not fashion,” Kennedy wrote on her Instagram post. “It is beyond me how you could let a look resembling a noose hanging from a neck out on the runway.”

Kennedy also noted the “horrifying history of lynching” associated with the noose. However, she claimed that some of the staff were even joking about the design before the show while the noose was hanging from the ceiling.

“I had a brief conversation with someone but all that it entailed was ‘it’s fashion. Nobody cares about what’s going on in your personal life so just keep it to yourself,’” she said.

The UK’s Mental Health Foundation also condemned the design and cited the need for fashion houses to be more careful and diverse in their creative process.

“It is disappointing to see this representation in our day and age considering how much ground we have covered in mental health in recent years,” said Antonis Kousoulis, associate director of research at the charity. “Highly influential global brands like Burberry certainly have a role to play in giving a voice to diverse views, respecting people with lived experience, and being role models.”

Meanwhile, Riccardo Tisci, Burberry’s chief creative officer and the designer of the A/W 2019 “Tempest” collection, apologized over the controversial design as well, saying he now realized it was “insensitive.”

“It was never my intention to upset anyone. It does not reflect my values nor Burberry’s and we have removed it from the collection. I will make sure that this does not happen again,” he added.

There Are 64,000 Missing Black Women and Girls in the United States and No One Seems to Care 2/25/2019

Nationwide — Over the years, a disturbingly disproportionate number of Black women and girls across the United States have gone missing. What’s even more alarming is that the media coverage and legislation that missing Black girls are getting seems to be lacking compared to missing white girls.A 2010 study about the media coverage of missing children in the United States discovered that only 20 percent of reported stories focused on missing Black children despite it corresponding to 33 percent of the overall missing children cases. Conclusively, the report said that missing Black youth — especially Black girls — are underreported in the news and it seems that many people don’t even care.

According to reports, when Black girls go missing, it’s often unclear whether they have run away from home, were inflicted violence, abducted, sent into the sex industry, among others. Basically, their safety and assurance to be brought back home was commonly ignored and not an utmost concern.

As of 2014, about 64,000 Black women and girls were missing across the U.S. However, most of those do not receive enough media attention and public support to be found.

In efforts to address the problem of missing Black children nationwide,  Reps. Bonnie Watson Coleman, Robin Kelly, and Yvette D. Clarke initiated the Congressional Caucus on Black Women and Girls in 2016. Through the caucus, they hope to create public policies that “eliminate significant barriers and disparities experienced by black women.”

Members of the caucus believe that more federal assistance and collaboration is needed to further eliminate the problem.

“I feel like knocking on every attic, every garage to see where those girls are,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said. “Let’s be an example to the world that we can’t rest until these girls are found.”

Meanwhile, the Black community and organizations utilize social media networks to bring back missing Black girls. Using the hashtag #BlackGirlsMissing, many young women have returned home safely despite the usually limited support from police and minimal reporting from media.

Black and Missing But Not Forgotten is a great non-profit organization focused on spotlighting and finding missing African Americans. For more details