UK broadcaster ITV and Lifted Entertainment have released details of extended duty of care protocols in advance of the eighth season of the popular dating series Love Island.
The companies announced that ahead of the filming of the new season, participants on the show will be offered video training and guidance covering inclusive language around disability, sexuality, race and ethnicity, behaviors and microaggressions.
Before entering the villa, participants will also be able to access inclusion training that includes conversations chaired by Leon Mann MBE, founder of the Black Collective of Media in Sport, and featuring contributions from DEI consultant Hayley Bennett, disability specialist Shani Dhanda and broadcaster Sean Fletcher. The discussions will discuss inclusive language, behavior, creating safe spaces and being a good ally.
“The world we live in is changing every day, and we want all of our Islanders to feel they are part of an inclusive environment in the Villa,” ITV group director of diversity Ade Rawcliffe said.
“As part of our duty of care process, it is also important we play our part in educating our participants to understand and empathize with different perspectives and lived experiences.”
Potential participants on the show will also watch a video fronted by Love Island‘s executive producer and head of welfare interviewing former Islanders. The video details how to cope with being filmed 24/7, the interactions they’ll have with producers, the support provided to family members, dealing with social media, and adapting to life away from the series.
The welfare service offered to participants also includes comprehensive psychological support, training on the impacts of social media and handling negativity, training on financial management, conversations about the impact of participating on the series, a proactive aftercare package following their participation, and guidance on taking on management after their season wraps.
The measures will be reviewed frequently, and could evolve in line with the series’ popularity and the increasing level of media attention around the show’s participants.
ITV launched a review of Love Island‘s participant welfare processes in 2018, and developed a duty of care framework the following year. By the fall of 2019, the network extended the guidelines to cover all shows on ITV, whether produced in-house or by third parties.
The broadcaster published its duty of care protocols last year, ahead of the seventh series of Love Island, after former series host Caroline Flack died by suicide in 2020. The deaths of two former contestants, each ruled as suicides, were also seen as catalysts for an industry-wide discussion in the UK, as well as a UK parliamentary inquiry, into duty of care for unscripted television participants.