Jeremy Kyle asked to appear at reality TV inquiry

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Karwai Tang

TV host Jeremy Kyle has been asked to appear before a Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee inquiry into reality TV.

The inquiry was announced in the wake of the death of a guest who appeared on Kyle’s ITV show after taking a lie detector test.

The broadcaster axed the long-running show soon after Steve Dymond died.

The committee said senior ITV executives would be the first to give evidence to the inquiry.

Chairman Damian Collins MP said: “We’re hoping that Jeremy Kyle will take this opportunity to come and answer questions about measures taken to prepare and support contestants”.

MPs will also question ITV’s chief executive Dame Carolyn McCall; Sir Peter Bazalgette, the chairman of ITV plc, and Chris Wissun, the director of Content Compliance at ITV plc on 25 June.

The inquiry will invite a range of former participants and programme-makers to give evidence over the coming months.

An inquest is currently going on into the death of Mike Thalassitis, a star of ITV show Love Island, who was found dead in a park in north London in March.

His death sparked calls for improved aftercare for people who take part in reality TV shows.

Broadcasting watchdog Ofcom said it was “vital” that people taking part in such shows were properly looked after, adding its broadcasting code of conduct could include new protections for them.

“We’re examining whether more can be done to safeguard the welfare of those people, similar to the duty of care we have in the broadcasting code to protect under-18s,” a spokesperson said.

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