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American Girl Doll Introduces First Doll With Hearing Loss For 2020 Girl Of The Year

American Girl has been a childhood staple for more than 30 years, with more than 32 million dolls sold since 1986.

The doll line has more than 40 characters. Every doll is different from each other, representing girls all throughout American history and modern times. The dolls come with their own books, and more than 157 million books have been sold.

American Girl announced on Good Morning America that it is releasing the first doll with a disability. Named Joss Kedrick, the doll has a hearing impairment and wears a hearing aid. There are hearing aids in the American Girl accessory line, however, there has not been a doll with hearing loss before.

Joss lives in California, is a dedicated surfer and cheerleader and was born deaf in her left ear. She uses her hearing aid on her right ear, which has some hearing loss.

American Girl’s 2020 Girl of the Year, Joss Kendrick, wears hearing aids
via American Girl

“Whether she’s on her surfboard or in the gym, Joss shows girls the importance of trying new things, pushing past stereotypes, and being a good team player,” American Girl said in a statement when it announced Joss as Girl of the Year.

Parents who have children with hearing loss were thrilled there is a doll that represents their child.

American Girl worked with hearing-loss experts to appropriately portray Joss not just in doll form, but in the books. They also worked with surfing and cheerleading experts to make sure Joss’ whole story is complete. In honor of Joss, American Girl also donated $25,000 to the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA).

Overall, people praised American Girl for their 2020 Girl of the Year.

Joss is currently available on American Girl’s website and in American Girl retail stores.