ITV has cancelled The Jeremy Kyle Show with immediate effect, following the death of a recent guest.
The decision to axe the ITV daytime talk show follows the revelation that guest Steven Dymond died from a suspected drugs overdose just 10 days after filming an appearance for the programme.
Carolyn McCall, ITV’s CEO, announced today: “Given the gravity of recent events we have decided to end production of The Jeremy Kyle Show.
“The Jeremy Kyle Show has had a loyal audience and has been made by a dedicated production team for 14 years, but now is the right time for the show to end.
“Everyone at ITV's thoughts and sympathies are with the family and friends of Steve Dymond.”
ITV bosses suspended the show on Monday after news of Dymond’s death emerged and wiped all previous episodes from its on demand service ITV Hub.
The network has since been under mounting pressure to axe the series, including from Tory MP Charles Walker, a vice-chairman of the all-party parliamentary group on suicide and self-harm prevention.
The chat show - dubbed ‘poverty porn’ - sees guests attempting to resolve personal conflicts and issues in front of a live studio audience ‘refereed’ by presenter Kyle. It launched in 2005 and has run for 16 series.
Dwayne Davison - a man labelled The Jeremy Kyle Show’s “most hated guest ever” - has revealed he made a suicide attempt, blaming the show for ruining his life.
The 27-year-old first appeared on the ITV daytime chat show in 2014 to take a lie detector test after his older girlfriend had accused him of cheating. He accused producers and Kyle of “human bear-baiting”, riling him up backstage and on screen in order to provoke a response.
Davison said: “It’s the worst thing that has ever happened in my life. They put the spoon in and stirred around my whole life.”
As a result of constant repeats and YouTube clips dubbing him the show’s “most hated” Davison revealed he has been subjected to abuse on social media for the last five years, and in 2018 he made an attempt to end his own life by overdosing on painkillers.
“I’ve had loads and loads of abuse and in 2018 I decided I’d had enough. A few hours later my girlfriend came upstairs and she called the ambulance.
“At the hospital they said I would have died. I know this is putting responsibility on other places but I 100% put it on that show. That show has ruined my life. It’s evil.”
ITV previously released a statement defending its policy of caring for guests appearing on The Jeremy Kyle Show.
A spokesperson said: “The programme has significant and detailed duty of care processes in place for contributors pre, during and post show which have been built up over 14 years, and there have been numerous positive outcomes from this, including people who have resolved complex and long-standing personal problems.
“Prior to the show a comprehensive assessment is carried out by the guest welfare team on all potential contributors. The guest welfare team consists of four members of staff, one consultant psychotherapist and three mental health nurses.”
“After filming has ended all guests are seen by a member of the guest welfare team to ensure they are feeling calm and emotionally settled before any participant leaves to travel home.
“An evaluation of their needs is also carried out at this time and should they require any ongoing service regarding the problem they discussed on the show then appropriate solutions are found for them.
“The day after recording of the show the participant will be contacted by production to carry out a welfare check and provide details of the services that have been sourced for them. The production team keep in touch with the participants in the days between recording and transmission and participants are given a production mobile contact number should they need to contact the show at any point following transmission.”
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