This is the Issue:
“Fat costumes” spread the message that people with obesity are lazy, consumed by food and not smart. Weight stigma is hurtful and can lead to:
- Feeling anxious or depressed
- Rejection from peers
- Unhealthy attempts at weight-loss
- Poor self-esteem
- Trouble at work or school
This is the Reality:
“Fat costumes” show a specific body type as a joke. However, the disease of obesity is not a joke. Obesity affects more than 50 health conditions such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
No other costume is based off a disease. Think about the health conditions we just listed. What would you think if someone wore a costume making fun of cancer?
In addition, “fat costumes” do not allow the people wearing them to feel what it is like to live with obesity every day. For instance, people with obesity are already shamed almost everywhere.
This is What You Can Do:
Using the OAC’s Action Center, contact major retailers and urge them to stop selling Halloween “fat costumes.” Do it now because Halloween is around the corner! This is a great opportunity to teach others about the serious disease of obesity and the dangers of weight stigma. The OAC will then send your letter to five major retail stores selling “fat costumes” this Halloween.