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Meet the New hearing loss Barbie

 Rose Ayling-Ellis holding a barbie wearing hearing aids
Rose Ayling-Ellis holding a barbie wearing hearing aids Image credit:

EastEnders and Strictly Come Dancing 2021 champion Rose Ayling-Ellis has unveiled a new Barbie doll with hearing devices behind the ears.

The actress, who has hearing loss, is behind the new Rose, Barbie and Friends campaign which includes a Ken with vitiligo, one doll with a prosthetic limb and another in a wheelchair.

Ms Ayling-Ellis said: "It's so important for children to be able to see themselves represented in the toys they play with.

"So I am thrilled that Mattel is releasing more dolls that encourage kids to celebrate and embrace their differences."

Toy manufacturer Mattel liaised with experts on how to portray hearing devices before designing the doll.

Rosie Eggleston, participation manager at the National Deaf Children's Society, sees the new doll as a "really positive step towards inclusion".

"She will give all children a much greater appreciation of the diversity of people around them and provide a window into the world of deafness," she said.

"This could really help them to be proud of their deafness, celebrate wearing hearing devices (sic) and have new opportunities to talk to their friends about what it's really like to be deaf."

The Barbie Fashionistas line will be available in the UK from Thursday August 18.