Grey London enacts a tactical rebrand for Transgender Day of Visibility
The work follows the agency’s ‘Incomplete Without the T” campaign from last year
31 March 2022
Grey is rebranding as They London, in a push for greater visibility and representation of the trans community in advertising. The rebrand is in response to Government policy that continues to neglect and exclude trans people from public spaces and healthcare.
Transgender Day of Visibility is observed on 31 March, to celebrate trans people and raise awareness of the discrimination faced by the trans community worldwide. Grey’s rebrand is a nod to they/them pronouns adopted by many non-binary and gender non-conforming people not currently recognised by UK law.
In 2021 the UK Government rejected a petition signed by more than 130,000 to amend the Gender Recognition Act 2004 to include recognition of non-binary gender identity.
Without recognition under law, trans and non-binary people have unequal footing to advocate for their basic human rights. A new report from a review commissioned by NHS England into the state of trans healthcare in the UK found that the public health services available to trans youth are insufficient and unsustainable, with waiting lists of up to two years leaving trans youth at “considerable risk”.
The same report called for significant service transformation to offer the same standards of clinical care, assessment and treatment for gender non-conforming youth that are currently offered to other young people. Asked about the report findings in the House of Commons last week, Prime Minister Boris Johnson responded, "When it comes to distinguishing between a man and a woman, the basic facts of biology remain overwhelmingly important".
In They London’s own offices in the new WPP Rose Court campus, agency leadership’s efforts to install gender-neutral bathroom facilities have been impeded by government building regulations that mandate single-sex bathrooms in public spaces and workplaces.
It’s not the first time Grey London has changed its name in support of a marginalised group. For their 100th anniversary in 2017, the agency rebranded as Valenstein & Fatt to honour their Jewish founders Lawrence Valenstein and Arthur Fatt, who in 1917 named their New York agency after the colour of their wallpaper, rather than reveal their Jewish heritage amid the rife antisemitism of the day.
The latest rebrand follows Grey London’s recent “Incomplete Without the T” campaign for GAY TIMES Amplifund in support of the transgender community. The hard-hitting campaign is a direct response to increased transphobia and hate around the globe and aims to showcase that if you erase the letter T from any word it won’t make sense – just like removing the T in LGBT+. The campaign is the biggest and the best received campaign in Gay Times Amplifund’s history.
Laura Jordan Bambach, president and chief creative officer of They London, said: “As an agency committed to the collision of difference, we are proud to champion diversity and strive to be an inclusive home for people of all gender identities. Trans rights are human rights, and we at They London are proud to support our trans siblings in their fight for representation and equality.”
Casey Sheehan, co-chair of the They London chapter of WPP Unite, said: “As a proud member of the trans community, I and my fellow non binary siblings at They London are delighted our agency is calling out transphobic government policies and supporting our rights. They London has already done fantastic work rallying against transphobia with GAY TIMES and Amplifund, and I’m excited for our work on trans representation moving forward.”