PTSD charity slams Ant & Dec over joke they made on I'm A Celebrity
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A PTSD charity has slammed Ant and Dec for a joke they made on I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!.
But Jacqui Suttie, founder and CEO of PTSD UK was not laughing when the presenters quipped about the condition in a recent episode.
As their old track 'Let's Get Ready To Rhumble' blared out, the pair shuddered, with Dec commenting 'flashback' and Ant adding 'PTSD'.
PTSD - Post-traumatic stress disorder - is an anxiety disorder triggered by extremely distressing events, such as a bereavement, miscarriage, or childhood abuse.
Sufferers often relive the traumatic event through nightmares and flashbacks, and may experience feelings of isolation, irritability and guilt.
Suttie acknowledged that Ant and Dec's comments were made in jest, but in an open letter to ITV, she highlighted how 'incredibly damaging' such jokes can be.
She wrote: "Using PTSD as a punchline in a joke not only further stigmatises the reality of the condition, but it also incorrectly and unhelpfully desensitises people to the debilitating symptoms that can lead to family problems, unemployment, physical health issues, self-harm, homelessness, alcohol and drug addiction, and ultimately suicide.
"Jokes like this, using PTSD as part of the gag is only one in a long line of examples where people are using PTSD in a really disrespectful way – but feel that as the leaders of the mental health campaign ‘Britain Get Talking’, you should be setting an example and so feel that ITV has a duty of care to its viewers which includes comments like this which are not only unnecessary, but can also be incredibly damaging to those affected by Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
"We appreciate the duo's script is likely written by a third party, so are not making assumptions, or directing this at any particular people, we simply ask that you try to do better.
"Support those who need support, don't undermine your own brilliant campaigns, and stand by your word to help those struggling with mental health issues."
LADbible has contacted ITV for comment.