Love Island: Women's Aid talks to ITV over 'controlling behaviour'

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Tasha pieing Luca on Love IslandImage source, ITV/Rex/Shutterstock
Image caption,
The guys look shocked but they must've known Luca was going to get his fair share of pies

A domestic abuse charity has spoken to ITV about "misogynistic and controlling behaviour" on Love Island.

Women's Aid said it was forced to act after being tagged in so many social posts about the show by viewers.

It has also criticised producers for missing out "an understanding of controlling behaviour in relationships" in its inclusion training for contestants.

ITV said it was "always looking at how we expand and evolve on this training".

This year's Love Island has seen a big backlash from viewers over the way the male islanders are treating the women.

It is rare to reach the end of each night's show without seeing one of the boys as a top trend, and not for the right reasons.

Women's Aid communications chief Teresa Parker said the charity was "being tagged into a stream of Twitter posts, with viewers highlighting the misogyny and controlling behaviour being shown on screen".

Over the last few days Luca has accused his partner Gemma of "flirting" with Casa Amor "bombshell" Billy, despite her insisting she wasn't interested in him in Sunday's movie night episode.

Luca's family released a statement on his Instagram in response to criticism, saying "when he watches it back, he will be embarrassed and deeply apologetic".

Image source, ITV/Rex/Shutterstock
Image caption,
The girls also used the pie challenge to show Dami what they thought of his behaviour

His pal Dami has also been slammed for shouting at Summer and calling her "fake" after he shared a three-way kiss with her and another "bombshell" in Casa Amor.

Even early favourite Davide - who kissed two girls during Casa Amor - has come under fire for constantly calling Ekin-Su a "liar" during their regular arguments.

Women's Aid said all of the above had led it to seek out ITV bosses to talk about the concerns it had about the show.

The charity said producers had shared information on their inclusion training - coaching given to all islanders around appropriate behaviours and sensitive topics including disability and race.

"But what appears to be missing is specific information on abusive relationships and an understanding of controlling behaviour in relationships," Teresa Parker said.

"It is vital that producers know when to intervene and challenge unacceptable behaviour."

Image source, ITV/Rex/Shutterstock
Image caption,
They might've been all smiles here but Luca was criticised for his "Tasha who?" comments on movie night

Teresa said Women's Aid had offered to help and were "in conversation with ITV and the Love Island producers about what we can do moving forward to help address this".

"ITV can play an important role here, by dealing with something that is clearly an ongoing issue for the show, and at Women's Aid we want to help where we can," she said.

Another domestic abuse charity, Refuge, has also tweeted that "the misogyny and casual sexism witnessed on this series... is extremely concerning".

"The double standards, gaslighting and coercive control being displayed by the men in the villa is hugely problematic," it added.

Former contestant Jacques was criticised for the way he treated his partner Paige before he quit the villa.

He has since come out and said he was left broken by the show but claimed producers pressed him to carry on.

In response to Women's Aid's comments, an ITV spokesman said: "We cannot stress highly enough how seriously we treat the emotional well-being of all of our islanders.

"Welfare is always our greatest concern, and we have dedicated welfare producers and psychological support on hand at all times, who monitor and regularly speak to all of the islanders in private and off-camera.

"Ahead of this series, contributors on the show were offered video training and guidance covering inclusive language around disability, sexuality, race and ethnicity, behaviours and microaggressions.

"We are always looking at how we expand and evolve on this training to ensure that all of our islanders feel they are part of a safe and inclusive environment."

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