Usually the Olympics are an exciting display of peace and good sportsmanship.
But just a few months before the games were set to begin in Sochi, Russia, anti-gay legislation was introduced. The legislation prohibits “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations around minors”, which caused a significant rise in violence and aggression toward the LGBTQ2+ community. The Russian government was not only encouraging the discrimination against their own citizens, but refused to protect the visiting LGBTQ2+ Olympic athletes and tourists from around the world.
We champion everyone’s right to love, and we believe that all of our employees, customers and communities should be protected equally. In February 2014, to show our love and support for all citizens, we partnered with AllOut, a non-profit organization that helps people all over the world get the freedom they need to love who they choose.
For the duration of our campaign, we asked customers to share their own support for LGBTQ2+ rights by drawing a pink triangle on their bodies and sharing it with #signoflove. Originally used to identify LGBTQ2+ prisoners in Nazi concentration camps in World War II, the pink triangle was reclaimed in the 1970s by the queer community and has become an internationally-recognized symbol for the fight for gay rights. It appears at holocaust memorial sites to commemorate those who suffered.
Our store windows featured the Sign of Love message (#signoflove) and we saw huge community engagement from people using the hashtag and showing their support for equal love. We also gathered images and signatures from all over North America into booklets that were delivered to Russian embassies and consulates on Valentine’s Day.