Christmas Shopping has always been a bustling experience. Shopping at toy stores, specifically, can get a bit extreme, especially around the holiday season. Toys R Us has decided to combat the loud and scrambling Christmas shopping experience. They are offering a quiet shopping event for customers on the Autism spectrum. Those with autism and their families will have the ability to participate in quiet hours at participating Toys R Us locations. The shopping event will include dimmed and limited florescent lighting. No announcements will be made over the loudspeaker and the in-store music will get slapped with the mute button.
The marketing director of Toys R Us, Mike Coogan, had something to say regarding the special quiet shopping event. He stated that his Toys R Us team is full of pride from reaching out to autism groups and holding these shopping events. Mike mentioned that these adjustments made to stores, creating a shopping period that offers a quiet experience, allow children to experience the fun of a toy shop.
For those who may not know, autism is a neurological disorder. It is characterized by an impairment in social interaction and communication, verbal or non-verbal. At times, there is also restrictive and repetitive behavior. One could see why the craziness of shopping might be a situation someone with autism would tend to avoid. This event will give those with Autism an opportunity to shop for their Holiday gifts in a much more comforting environment.
Toys R Us is doing its part to deliver a calm environment for those on the autism spectrum. Autism-friendly signage will be posted and quiet zones will be located throughout the store. The opportunity for these kids to be able to pick out their favorite toys just like everyone else is important. This shopping event will no doubt be a catalyst for future events, regardless of the organization. It will show that everyone needs to be given a chance to do what they love. Disability or not, shopping for one’s favorite toys seems like a basic human right.