CONTROVERSIAL chat show host Jeremy Kyle could be forced to publicly apologise for “mocking” a dyslexic guest following a campaign spearheaded by a Wirral grandfather.
David Edwards, from Hoylake, said he was left shocked after watching Mr Kyle’s treatment of a man who was struggling to remember his children’s birthdays.
The 60-year-old believed the host was making fun of the guest, named only as Glyn, and refused to accept his lack of memory was a result of his dyslexic condition.
Following complaints to the show, producers accepted that Mr Kyle should have been “better informed”.
Wirral West MP and minister for disabled people Esther McVey wrote to ITV in support of the protests.
Television watchdog Ofcom is also looking into whether an investigation is required Now Mr Edwards is calling on Globe readers to back a petition by charity Dyslexia Together to call for a full public apology on air.
He said: “I was so disgusted with what I saw when I first watched the show that I knew I had to do something. I was determined to let it be known how Jeremy Kyle had behaved and was not prepared to let it go.
“I worked with Dyslexia Together to launch the petition and we have had over 400 signatures so far but we’re hoping to get a lot more.”
Although the episode - which was originally broadcast on November 16 last year -was later pulled from ITV’s repeat schedule, the conversation in question is available to view on the petition’s webpage.
The clip shows Mr Kyle accusing Glyn of being drunk before chastising him as he struggles to recall his children’s birthdates.
Mr Kyle said: “...Hold on a minute, do me a favour – you don’t know your kids’ birthdays because you’re dyslexic?”
After laughter from the studio audience, Mr Kyle goes on to explain that he believes dyslexia is about “reading and writing.”
As a result of the broadcast, Dyslexia Together said Mr Kyle portrayed the condition to viewers in a “misleading” way and want him to make a “full, public, personal apology.”
Mr Edwards and the charity also want ITV to “accept responsibility for lacking in its duty of care” and are calling for a special episode of the programme to raise awareness of dyslexia.
Mr Edwards added: “I believe we can get enough people on board to force Jeremy Kyle into saying sorry because he should have made those comments in the first place.”
To view the clip or sign the petition, visit http://t.co/2ov8RbyB