The American Red Cross has come under fire on social media for a poster some are calling racist.
The poster was part of the organisation's Aquatics Centennial Campaign that launched in 2014, a campaign that aims to reduce drowning rates in high-risk communities.
People have taken to social media to express their concern about racism in the poster that is called “Be cool, follow the rules”. It shows children of different colour playing together in a pool and pool area. The kids playing by the rules are portrayed as "cool" while those misbehaving are "not cool".
Those who are offended by the poster say that it shows the white children doing the right thing, while the darker children appear to be the ones misbehaving.
There are big red arrows pointing to those who are behaving and those who are not. It has been deemed as a “super racist” poster by Twitter user John Sawyer.
The Red Cross were quick to apologise to Twitter users and take action.
The Red Cross have since released a statement, and have removed the poster from its website, app and discontinued its production.
“We deeply apologise for any misunderstanding, as it was absolutely not our intent to offend anyone. As one of the nation’s oldest and largest humanitarian organisations, we are committed to diversity and inclusion in all that we do, every day,” the statement says.
“We have removed the poster from our website and Swim App and have discontinued production. We have notified all of our partner aquatic facilities requesting they take down the poster.”
A formal agreement is currently being completed with a diversity advocacy organisation so they can guide the Red Cross going forward.
The organisation believes they have done everything possible to address the situation.