Walmart is stepping up its anti-boy bullying campaign, announcing Thursday it will no longer allow boys to wear Converses shoes in schools and other facilities in the U.S.
The move comes after a string of recent incidents in which young boys have been bullied for wearing shoes with their initials on them.
The retailer said it is working with school administrators to ensure students can wear Converts shoes at any time.
“We know this is a personal decision that many people make, and we want to ensure the safety of our associates, our customers, and our communities,” Walmart said in a statement.
“Our safety and well-being is of paramount importance to us, and it is our policy to not allow our associates to wear these types of shoes at work.
We also want to emphasize that Converse has been the official choice for many years in many locations around the world.
The safety and comfort of our customers and associates is our top priority.”
In addition to the U, Walmart said it will stop selling Converse sneakers in Mexico, Peru and Brazil, and has removed them from some of its stores in China and India.
The company said it has also removed its footwear from a few retailers in Japan, including Shibuya and Ikebukuro.
The retailer said its anti, anti-bullying campaign is also being expanded to include other retailers.
Walmart said it received numerous complaints in recent months about how boys are wearing Converses shoes, which are marketed to young men with a distinct “V” logo on the soles.
Walmart said its goal is to educate parents about the safety and security of the footwear, and that it will also work with retailers to promote a more comfortable environment for boys.