C4 told to stop ‘abusing’ children on reality show

Channel 4 has come under fire from child care bosses for ’emotionally abusing’ the young participants on Boys and Girls Alone.

Cornwall County Council has written to Channel 4 and TV watchdog Ofcom calling for the remaining episodes to be axed, according to a report by BBC News.

The reality show features children as young as eight left to their own devices in cottages in Cornwall and has shown some of the youngsters fighting and crying.

Ruby Parry, Cornwall County Council’s assistant director for social care and family services, wrote: “It is in our view highly irresponsible for Channel 4 to broadcast a programme which demeans and to some extent demonises children.

“This distress has now been publicly broadcast to all of these children’s peers, and is therefore likely to have long term consequences for some of them,” she added.

The Council are considering ‘legal options’ to stop the final two episodes from being broadcast.

Andrew Mackenzie, head of factual entertainment at Channel 4, said that the children’s welfare was its first priority and all programmes were made in consultation with the relevant Ofcom guidelines.

Andrew told the BBC: “All the children were carefully chosen and screened by appropriately qualified experts, including a clinical psychologist, to make sure they could cope well with the experience of being in the series.”

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