Rite Aid and Delhaize America—owner of Hannaford Stores and Food Lion—have reportedly pledged their commitment to the National Center on Sexual Exploitation’s efforts to limit the exposure of Cosmopolitan’s covers.
The NCSE has deemed the content on Cosmo’s covers is far too explicit to be in plain sight, and too many minors are being exposed to adult subject matters.
“Cosmopolitan magazine regularly features articles, and occasionally explicit pictures, encouraging girls to participate in group, anal, and violent torture sex, and it blatantly targets young girls by displaying teen idols on their cover, says Dawn Hawkins, executive director at NCSE in a release. “Recently, Cosmo even posted an article encouraging readers to visit hardcore porn sites, including one site that is particularly focused on the extremely violent torture of women.”
The nonprofit began its campaign against Cosmo in 2013, after they identified it as one of the “Dirty Dozen” organizations that contribute to sexual exploration. NCSE is encouraging every retailer to respond similarly by poly-wrapping Cosmo covers and stopping the sale of the magazine to minors. The organization conducted a poll this year and 67% of respondents agreed that the covers are not always appropriate for minors, with 55% indicating the covers should be hidden from plain view. What’s more, 47% of respondents said the magazine should not be sold to minors.
NCSE and others allege that Victoria Hearst, granddaughter of William Randolph Hearst, is supporting the organization’s efforts. However, a spokesperson for Cosmopolitan tells min they are still uncertain if all of the information in the statement is accurate. The brand offered this response: “Cosmopolitan is the most successful global media brand for young women, publishing 60 editions in 79 countries and 32 languages. Its award-winning content is produced for adults by leading female journalists. We are proud of all that the brand has achieved for women around the world in the areas of health, relationships, career, politics, equality and social issues.”
Rite Aid, which has approximately 4,600 stores, has confirmed NCSE’s report and in an email to min a spokesperson says, “We are working to place future issues of this publication behind pocket shields.”