Rochelle Humes scared to take children to nursery after death threats from presenting row

·Contributor
·4-min read
Rochelle Humes said she was scared to leave the house after receiving death threats. (Getty Images)
Rochelle Humes said she was scared to leave the house after receiving death threats. (Getty Images)

Rochelle Humes has revealed she was scared to take her children to nursery after receiving death threats over a row about who would present a documentary covering the deaths of black women during childbirth.

This Morning sparked a heated debate last year when she announced on the show she would be presenting Channel 4 documentary The Black Maternity Scandal: Dispatches - prompting claims she had replaced Lorraine fashion and beauty presenter Candice Brathwaite.

Humes, 32, has now opened up about the backlash to the Diary Of A CEO podcast, saying: "I didn't want to make it about me. I didn't want to make it about the fact that actually I was scared to take my kid to nursery that day because I got death threats.

"I turned everything off, I turned off comments and then I was like I'm not dealing with this, I'm just going to live my life and I literally cried for 48 hours and was devastated."

The Saturdays singer - who is mother to eight-year-old daughter Alai-Mai, four-year-old Valentina and 28-month-old son Blake with TV presenter and JLS singer husband Marvin Humes - revealed Marvin took her phone away from her to stop her reading the negative comments about herself.

Watch: Rochelle Humes is not sure about giving the coronavirus vaccine to her children

Read more: Rochelle Humes addresses claims she 'stole' Black women childbirth documentary

The documentary was made to bring awareness to the fact that four times as many Black women in the UK die during pregnancy and childbirth than white women.

But after Humes announced she would be presenting the programme Braithwaite - author of the book I Am Not Your Baby Mother - posted on social media that she had originally been approached to front the show.

Humes said: "I'd woken up to and seen this post and was mortified, she was a darker-skinned black woman, the first thing I did was DM her 'this is my number, I don't know what s*** has gone down here but this is my number, give me a call'. To this day I've not heard from her...

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 21:  Marvin Humes and Rochelle Humes attend ELLE fashion editor Georgia Medley's birthday party at Middle Eight on August 21, 2021 in London, England.  (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Middle Eight)
Rochelle Humes said husband Marvin Humes took her phone away to stop her reading the negative messages. (Getty Images)

"Then that sort of triggered this whole conversation of the fact that I'd taken a darker-skinned woman's bread and the dial switched overnight and I was beside myself, devastated."

She went on: "It sort of snowballed into this chat and colourism most definitely exists, I'm aware of that. I might be lighter than one woman but I'm definitely darker than some.

"I let that conversation play out because the more we talk about these things the better, however it was harsh and it was a hard pill to swallow."

Blogger and writer Braithwaite, 33, has two children and has previously spoken how she almost died after giving birth to her seven-year-old daughter Esme, when infected puss sent her into septic shock.

Following Humes' announcement in February 2021 that she would be presenting the show Braithwaite posted that “up until six weeks ago I thought I was going to present that documentary.”

She later clarified in a statement on Instagram: "The producer of the show that Rochelle Humes is to present has called me asking me to clarify that I was never in the running to present that particular documentary.

“So for the record - I was contacted in March 2020 by a different production company about developing a similar documentary...

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 21: Rochelle Humes New Brand 'My Little Coco'  on February 21, 2020 in Sheffield, England. (Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images for Boots)
Rochelle Humes said the colourism debate is an important one. (Getty Images)

Read more: Rochelle Humes tried to scrub skin off after suffering racial abuse as child

"I was also told that I would never have been a front runner for this particular documentary as they prefer their subjects to be removed from the situation.

“They had asked me to contribute my expertise but I declined as I don't want my trauma to be mined for a show where I have no control of the narrative.

“My agent had asked a few weeks ago if there was a possibility I could co-present alongside Rochelle and was told there was not."

Watch: Una Healy talks about meeting Rochelle and Mollie at The Saturdays audition

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