Women's charity issue Love Island warning as Adam Collard returns to villa

·2-min read

Women's Aid is calling on ITV to make sure there is support in place for Love Island contestants.

It comes as former contestant Adam Collard returns to the villa.

During the 2018 series he was criticised by the charity and some viewers, who claimed his treatment of fellow contestant Rosie Williams amounted to "gaslighting".

The term gaslighting - which was taken from the 1938 play Gas Light - means making someone question their own judgement.

Now the charity says it wants the broadcaster - which has published detailed duty of care guidelines - to recognise how serious the issue is.

Women's Aid told Sky News: "In the 2018 series of Love Island, we saw Rosie rightly call out Adam for his unacceptable behaviour, which included gaslighting and emotional abuse.

"We hope that ITV recognise how serious this issue is and that it must be learned from, considering they have asked Adam to return to the show.

"Love Island is watched by many young people and we know what a huge influence it has. Producers must make sure there is support for contestants throughout, and intervene if relationships become unhealthy or abusive."

ITV2 dating show has previously attracted negative press attention and questions surrounding its duty of care to contestants following the deaths of former contestants Sophie Gradon and Mike Thalassitis in 2018 and 2019.

The show's former host Caroline Flack took her own life at the age of 40 in February 2020.

Ahead of the show's return last summer, ITV announced that contestants would now be offered a minimum of eight therapy sessions following the show, as well as training on the impact of social media and "how to handle potential negativity".

They are also given help with financial management and how to secure representation for media and public appearances.

Collard, 26, counts among Love Island's most divisive contestants.

The Newcastle-raised former personal trainer coupled up with a quick succession of girls in the villa, but it was his smile as Rosie cried following their split that prompted an outpouring of criticism.

At the time, Katie Ghose, then chief executive of Women's Aid, released a statement highlighting "clear warning signs in Adam's behaviour".

She said Rosie had "called out Adam's unacceptable behaviour on the show" and asked viewers to join her in "recognising unhealthy behaviour in relationships and speaking out against all forms of domestic abuse - emotional as well as physical".

Collard is promising his return to the Mallorcan villa as a bombshell contestant will "ruffle a few feathers". He re-entered the show on Monday night.

Sky News has approached Adam Collard and ITV for comment.

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