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American Family Association Urges Christians to Sign #BoycottTarget Pledge After Man Caught Recording Underage Girls

( [email protected] ) Jul 01, 2016 12:19 PM EDT
The American Family Association has once again urged Christian families to refrain from shopping at Target after a man was caught recording underage girls in a dressing room at a store in Bedford, New Hampshire.
The American Family Association's #BoycottTarget pledge has received over 1.3 million signatures. AP Photo

The American Family Association has once again urged Christian families to refrain from shopping at Target after a man was caught recording underage girls in a dressing room at a store in Bedford, New Hampshire.

"Over the Independence Day holiday and throughout the month of July, we're asking all those who have signed the #BoycottTarget pledge to work diligently to get just one other person in their circle of influence to sign it as well. We want to give another boost to the boycott against Target's unsafe and family unfriendly bathroom and fitting room policy," AFA President Tim Wildmon said of the group's petition.

The petition, which was created in April after the retail chain announced it would allow men to go into women's bathrooms if they identify as female, has so far been signed by over 1.3 million people.

According to the Boston Globe, 22-year-old Zachery Bishop was arrested last week following a report that a man was recording young girls who were changing clothes in the dressing room of the local Target store. Bishop was charged with violation of privacy, Bedford police said.

Because Target's current rule does not protect women and children, the AFA is urging Target to consider offering unisex bathrooms for those that want to use them, but still keep separate bathrooms for men and women as an option.

Wildmon argued that the store giant is turning a "deaf ear" to all the American families who have expressed their concerns at these policies, with fears that they could allow men to dress as women and target girls.

Evangelist Franklin Graham has also encouraged families to sign the petition and accused the retail giant of "forgetting who has made their stores strong."

"It's not gender-neutral people out there-it's working American families, fathers and mothers with boys and girls they love," he wrote in a Facebook post.

"Wake up corporate America and stockholders - American families clearly do not want this. Over 1.2 million people have signed the online petition to boycott Target stores. This is sending a strong message, and I hope that millions more will sign it," he added.

Last year, Target announced it had decided to back away from gender-specific signage and go "gender neutral" in its stores by eliminating the colors blue and pink in displays and signage and getting rid of the words "boys" and "girls" on clothing and toys wherever possible.

Despite growing opposition, Target has refused to reverse its bathroom policy: "Our focus on safety is unwavering. And we want to make sure we provide a welcoming environment for all of our guests,"  Target CEO Brian Cornell said in an interview in May.