Home Business ITV boss called to answer questions by MPs on safeguarding after Phillip Schofield affair

ITV boss called to answer questions by MPs on safeguarding after Phillip Schofield affair

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Dame Carolyn McCall is asked by the culture, media and sport committee to answer questions on Wednesday 14 June, following Phillip Schofield’s admission of an affair with a younger This Morning colleague.
Thursday 1 June 2023 18:03, UK
ITV’s chief executive has been called to give evidence in parliament about the broadcaster’s approach to safeguarding and handling complaints, following Phillip Schofield’s departure.
Dame Carolyn McCall has been asked by the culture, media and sport committee (CMS) to answer questions on Wednesday 14 June.
It comes after ITV announced it had launched an external review to establish the facts around the reports of a relationship between presenter Schofield and a younger employee on This Morning.
The committee is already set to question ITV group director of strategy, policy and regulation Magnus Brooke, alongside executives from Channel 4 and Channel 5, about the draft Media Bill, in a separate session on Tuesday next week.
Schofield last week admitted to an „unwise but not illegal” relationship with a younger male colleague and stepped down from his roles with ITV. He was also dropped by talent agency YMU.
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Following the admission, the 61-year-old was also dropped as an ambassador for The Prince’s Trust charity, and Jane McDonald was confirmed to replace him as host of the British Soap Awards.
ITV announced it had instructed a barrister to carry out an external review of the situation in a letter to Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer, CMS committee chair Dame Caroline Dinenage, and Ofcom chief executive Dame Melanie Dawes.
Read more on Phillip Schofield:
Timeline of ITV departure after colleague affair
Key extracts from ITV’s letter on external review
Eamonn Holmes alleges ‘total cover-up’

In a written response, Dame Caroline said the media industry’s „duty of care towards its staff” was „a matter of the highest importance”.
She continued: „Whilst the recent coverage focuses on the Schofield case, it also raises fundamental issues about safeguarding and complaint handling both at ITV and more widely across the media.
„These issues should, particularly in the case of public service broadcasters, be open to scrutiny. The public must have confidence in the robustness of public service broadcasters’ safeguarding procedures.
„Whilst these are issues that we want to discuss first with ITV, we will also consider them in our regular scrutiny sessions with other public service broadcasters, including the BBC later this month and Channel 4 later in the year.”
Following reports Dame Carolyn was asked to appear at the previously scheduled session on Tuesday, it has now been confirmed that hosting the separate meeting on 14 June will allow next week’s event to focus on „its intended purpose of scrutinising the government’s draft Media Bill”.
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How Phillip Schofield’s career unravelled
Schofield originally said he was leaving This Morning after more than two decades because he had „become the story” following speculation of a rift between him and co-presenter Holly Willoughby. Reports of the rift came after his brother was jailed for 12 years over child sex offences.
At the time of this first announcement, ITV described Schofield as „hands down one of the best broadcasters of his generation” and said they would continue to work with him on other projects, including the soap awards.
However, he was dropped entirely when details of the affair emerged the following week.
Willoughby, 41, is expected to return to the show on Monday, when she returns from holiday.
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