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33 Comments

  1. 1

    Pninit cole

    Thank you for advocating!
    We have posted on their site and will call and write as well. Nickelodeon and Hill should also be contacted! They have claimed to use poor judgement, this is beyond poor judment. This is stupid and downright mean!

    Reply
    1. 1.1

      Michele

      Good luck getting a human to answer when you call them. I’ve tried about 10 times and it just keeps cycling me through the same options and not a single one is to press 0 to speak to someone. Adding fuel to my angry mom of a celiac sufferer I tell ya!

      Reply
  2. 2

    cynthia loeffler

    this just shows the hate in peoples hearts and minds. even with apology I will never shop there. people like this just adds to our struggle with this disease. jerks from Hollyweird with their fad diets also make our life more of a hardship. I am so angry with all of them I could just launch them all into orbit.

    Reply
    1. 2.1

      CeeCee

      This helps explain why I was bullied by a woman sitting behind me in an adjoining booth who overheard me order a gluten free option in a neighborhood restaurant.

      I’m 63 yrs old and in my life I’ve never experienced anything like what happened to my husband and me once this woman heard me order. She got up from her seat, came around to our table, stood over me and began to make an issue of my order also bashing “ this ridiculous restaurant for caving to this B.S. trend and catering to idiots like you”.
      Understand, this wasn’t a much-discussed order she overheard, just the words gluten-free used as an adjective with hamburger bun. The harassment didn’t stop and escalated to the level that the owner/ manager came over and threw them out.

      Thanks to all —now including Party City— for emboldening the ignorant. Karma will win.

      Reply
  3. 3

    Susannah Hann

    Thank you very much for addressing this. I was horrified at that add and the stigma represented.

    Reply
  4. 4

    Susannah Hann

    Thank you very much for addressing this ad. I was shocked by how hateful the add was and how much stigma and misinformation must be “out there” for this add to have been conceived, produced AND released!

    Reply
  5. 5

    Diane Hoey

    I’m so glad you didn’t hang up your cleats. I’m so appreciative that you brought this ad to our attention. The insensitivity and labeling is offensive, ignorant and arrogant. Thanks for all your time and effort. It’s needed and appreciated.

    Reply
  6. 6

    Jonathan Hoyle

    The ad agency that created this ad is Hill Holliday. Party City hired them last year, and their first new ads for them were ones for Halloween (which were funny).

    Why Hill Holliday descended into this, I don’t know. Party City takes responsibility for green-lighting the ad, but they have at least now taken the ad down, issued a public apology, and will be making a donation to Celiacs Research. A token gesture? Perhaps, but there is probably little else they can do now.

    It is Hill Holliday that I am having trouble understanding here. This is a young, growing (at least until yesterday) marketing agency, and their job is to try to get the pulse of the country and create ads that will increase the mindshare and sales of their clients. I find it a bit bizarre that they would engage in this.

    And had it only been about the food, I don’t believe it would have gotten quite the traction it did. But the exchange between the women went beyond that. After pointing out the gluten-free table, we get:

    WOMAN #1: “Do we even know people who are like that?”

    WOMAN #2: “Tina.”

    WOMAN #1: “Oh, gross, yeah.”

    Nice. People who are “like that.”

    I am not sure what the whole point of that exchange was. It’s not like Party City is in the business of pushing exclusively gluten-enriched foods. The only value here is for humor. And they were not content with generating humor based upon ridiculing gluten-free foods themselves. But they actually had to add the “people like that” portion. Not just the food deserves mocking, but even the people who eat it, should be.

    “Tina” becomes the substitute for all those (either by choice, or by medical diagnosis) who are gluten-free in their diet. She is a person “like that”. She is “gross”. Eww. Don’t be like Tina.

    Reply
  7. 7

    Michele

    AND it is IMPOSSIBLE to get anyone at Party City Customer Service to answer their phone. Press 0 for further questions isn’t even an option. I don’t do social media but this is a great reason to start. Party City will not get one more red cent from me or any of my family.

    Reply
  8. 8

    Maureen Burke

    Like they did not know it was bad when filming and the words were coming out of their mouths? Bad publicity stunt. Party City will never see another penny from me!

    Reply
  9. 9

    Artsygal

    What a bunch of jerks. It isn’t bad enough that we have to live with this disease, but now we have to listen to these uninformed, poorly educated idiots spewing this muck. Party City not one penny more from me….hope you go out of business.

    Reply
  10. 10

    Leslie

    Could you imagine them having a lower table for those in wheel chairs or braille signs identifying food and then saying:
    WOMAN #1: “Do we even know people who are like that?”

    WOMAN #2: “Tina.”

    WOMAN #1: “Oh, gross, yeah.”

    The world would be livid!!!

    But I agree that Hill Holiday should hold some responsibility. We can contact them and let them know we are contacting their clients to let their clients know that we will boycott them unless Hill Holiday apologizes and makes restitution… Their clients consist of Bank of America, Dunkin Donuts, LG, Chilis, John Hancock, Liberty Mutual, Great Wolf Lodge, Capella University, Novartis, Merrill Lynch, Johnson & Johnson, Smucker’s, Tempur Sealy to name a few.

    Reply
  11. 11

    Camille ortiz

    Emailed and messaged on FB.. Ugh so aggravating!

    Reply
  12. 12

    ChicoYaya

    Did you see the apology they posted on FB yesterday?
    Party City values its customers above all else, and we take your feedback extremely seriously. We recognize that we made an error in judgment by running the recent Big Game commercial, which was insensitive to people with food allergies. We have removed the commercial from our website and all other channels, and sincerely apologize for any offense this may have caused. We’d also like to clarify that Sunny Anderson was not involved in the creation of this commercial in any way, and we apologize for any offense it has caused with her audience and fans. We will also be reviewing our internal vetting process on all advertising content to avoid any future issues. In addition, Party City will be making a donation in support of Celiac Disease research.

    Reply
    1. 12.1

      Lori

      Unless their apology is made in such a way that it reaches as many people as their original ad did, it is meaningless.

      Reply
  13. 13

    Holly

    I wish I could upload a picture. Just posted this article on PC’s website with the following note, ” I’m hosting a fundraiser with 100% gluten free and delicious food and ZERO party swag from Party City!”

    Reply
    1. 13.1

      ANGIE JOZEFOWICZ

      Priceless!!! Nice job, Holly!

      Reply
    2. 13.2

      CeeCee

      Thumbs up, Holly!

      Reply
  14. 14

    Amy

    Making fun of people different than you is never a good idea.

    Reply
  15. 15

    Judy

    I plan to go into the 2 local stores and introduce my self as a celiac and give he/her a copy of Gluten Free Dude s blog…….
    Yes……please don t hang up those cheats! We need you !

    Reply
  16. 16

    becky

    Those unfamiliar with Celiac can’t imagine a mother’s broken heart when a little four year old is doubled over in extreme pain from something they ate. Even when gluten free, cross-contact can cause the same unfortunate reaction. School administrators, teachers and cafeteria workers need better educated, too!

    Reply
  17. 17

    Cherylann

    What the hell is wrong with you Party City! You should have never said anything about it. Your awful! Done with buy anything from them!

    Reply
  18. 18

    Sandy

    I have a mild gluten allergy, at 52 my skin was scaley at my waist on my back. Eating gluten free is a chore. But it can be done. Just dont moan and groan. If I go out I will bring stuff to partys to share and I can eat. I also bought a cook book made my life easier. Did I choose it NO, but I do feel better.

    Reply
  19. 19

    JJ

    My ex boyfriend and his adult kids 18,28,30 think my gluten intolerance is fake! They post Facebook memes about it being fake. All 3 kids and the father take multiple mood altering medications for multiple mental disorders and adhd, bipolar, the 18 yr old is a nympho that cuts herself with glass, the 30 yr old son slept in his mother’s bed until he was 17!!! (No joke) and they are all the biggest liars I have ever met, BUT to them, gluten intollerance is something that needs gossipping and ridiculing because to them(none are experts at anything except lying) gluten intollerance is something to be shamed about!!!

    This is all a true story! No joke!

    Reply
    1. 19.1

      Gluten Dude

      They seem like wonderful people <

      Reply
  20. 20

    Dan Douglas

    I think you people should be grateful to Party City. Their big screw up is bringing attention to your plight. Before this, I’d never heard of Celiac, nor probably most of the public. I always thought the gluten-free was just some fad diet. Their insult has done you a service. Public awareness often leads to research that may one day produce a digestive aide to those with Celiacs. Party City has promised a donation towards the cause, so perhaps forgive them and give them a second chance.

    Reply
  21. 21

    Andy B

    Fairly certain I found the email addresses of the CEO and President online
    jharrison@partycity.com – CEO
    gmelnick@partycity.com – President

    Reply
  22. 22

    Dee

    I just wrote them a scathing letter. Will post if they respond.

    Reply
  23. 23

    Jodi

    It’s such a strange phenomenon that others should even care to be critical of this disease. I just don’t get it. Who in their right mind would EVER give up pizza AND beer if they didn’t have to give it up. Enough said. Could say so very much more.

    Reply
  24. 24

    Ashlyn

    I am late to the game but how sad is it that we have come to a place where it is socially acceptable and “funny” to criticize others negatively bc they are different. You can’t tell me for one second that Party City didn’t know exactly what they were doing. I would like to believe it was a sincere apology and not a calculated measure after they realized the possible effect on their bottom line. I have Celiac as do my 2 children. I can assure you that there is no ad worth the exposure when a small child sees it on television and feels they are considered gross. It’s bad enough that we have to go to parties with our little cooler of snacks and can’t eat all the yummy stuff everyone else eats but then to be ridiculed on top of it. Perhaps Party City and the ad agency should take a gander at the statistics around Celiac, gluten intolerance and gluten allergies and then the numbers of those yet to be diagnosed. That is the population of folks they stand to alienate. I can tell you right now unless someone shows up on my doorstep and apologizes to my kids personally they will never receive another penny of my money. Blaming the ad agency is just a further insult of our intelligence. I have been responsible for approving advertising. I know the expense involved and I also know that it is something that goes through several levels of approval and vetting bc of the cost involved. Very sad . It is however nice to know that there is a whole community of us looking out for each other. Hugs

    Reply
  25. 25

    Sony

    Is this anti semitism?

    Reply

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