Ingrid Tarrant slammed as 'irresponsible' for continuing to hug but not getting vaccinated

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Mandatory Credit: Photo by Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock (11907184bc)
Ingrid Tarrant
'Good Morning Britain' TV Show, London, UK - 17 May 2021
Ingrid Tarrant outraged 'Good Morning Britain' viewers with her opinions on hugs (Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock)

Ingrid Tarrant has angered Good Morning Britain viewers with some controversial comments about COVID as lockdown lifts which saw her branded "irresponsible".

The TV personality, who was previously married to presenter Chris Tarrant, admitted that she had been hugging people throughout the pandemic and hadn't warned them first that she wasn't vaccinated.

Read more: Joy for UK pubs and hugs tempered by rise in virus variant

Making further comments that shocked viewers and Good Morning Britain's hosts, she said that she didn't think the vaccine stopped people getting coronavirus and didn't see how a hug could spread it.

Asked whether she had continued to hug people before the guidelines changed, Tarrant, 66, said: “I have but I have asked. I haven’t stolen a hug.”

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Mandatory Credit: Photo by Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock (11907184at)
Dr Hilary Jones, Adil Ray, Susanna Reid and Ingrid Tarrant
'Good Morning Britain' TV Show, London, UK - 17 May 2021
Ingrid Tarrant argued her views on 'Good Morning Britain' (Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock)

But when she was asked whether she'd been vaccinated, Tarrant worried viewers by saying: “I am not worried about catching it. That sounds arrogant, doesn’t it? I am clean, I take precautions,having the vaccination doesn't stop us from getting it and it doesn't stop us from spreading it."

Presenter Adil Ray said: "Well it does, it's proven to lower transmission - have you had the vaccine?"

But she joked: "No not yet, I am far too young."

Ray told her he thought her views were very worrying, saying it was the sort of thing that could damage his vulnerable family members.

She admitted: "My children are furious with me and say I am being irresponsible."

Viewers were outraged to hear Tarrant's comments and accused her of having a lack of information on the subject, as well as being irresponsible.

One tweeted: "Ingrid Tarrant is spectacularly uninformed and ignorant."

Another accused her of "weapons grade stupidity and irresponsibility", while someone else tweeted: "Why on earth do they have people like that lady on? It just validates others to be irresponsible."

Tarrant sparked further anger by saying she wasn't having the vaccine because she had never had the flu and had a strong immune system, and revealing that she wouldn't tell people she hadn't been vaccinated before hugging them.

However, as Dr Hilary Jones explained to her why the vaccine was safe and pulled her up on her "worrying" view that a hug couldn't spread coronavirus, she backed down and said that she would consider warning people about not being vaccinated before hugging them.

Read more: Mel B says work was her 'safe place' from domestic violence as she shares horror at lockdown effects

Talking about her hugging habit, Tarrant said: "I have the hug bug, I've had it all my life, and I hug people I don't even know and I even hugged a traffic warden who said 'steady on'.

"I am very tactile and I think it is very primal as it is the first thing we do."

Watch: Dr Hilary Jones explains changes as lockdown restrictions ease in England