As a part of their larger “Equality” initiative, which brought the likes of LeBron James, Serena Williams, Kevin Durant, Michael B. Jordan and Alicia Keys together for an inspiring short film released in February, Nike will bring back its BETRUE collection on June 1st. The company started BETRUE six years ago as an employee-led grassroots program inspired by the benefits diversity can bring to communities and workplaces. The company has raised around $2.5 million in financial aid through the campaign for LGBTQ causes in the United States since 2012.
“The key for us was to create something that people could unite around to show their support for LGBTQ athletes,” said LBGT Network Leader at Nike Robert Gorman. “Sporting your rainbow in the gym or on a run became a way to feel like you belonged to something larger – you were connected to being ‘out’ or being an ally. The rainbow has and always will be incorporated into the BETRUE product in some way.”
This year’s collection will include both footwear and apparel and will feature the rainbow as well as “other prominent symbols of Pride, including the color pink and the triangle.” On sale in the footwear department with a BETRUE twist will be the Nike Classic Cortez, Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34, NikeLAB Air VaporMax and Nike Flyknit Racer. Nike is also offering Dri-FIT tanks, t-shirts and running socks for both men and women, all of which will be available for purchase at Nike retailers and at Nike.com starting next week.
Showing a more progressive side to marketing athletic wear, this latest campaign comes a couple of months after Nike announced they are developing a “Pro Hijab” – a product that has been well over a year in the making – for Muslim athletes. Nike also released a commercial called “What Will They Say About You?” earlier this year to celebrate the “pioneering spirit of the Middle East.”