Richard Madeley asks guest who was spiked if she 'watched her drink'
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The Good Morning Britain presenter, 65, was speaking to a woman who was spiked during a night out, along with her mother. While the victim was explaining to ITV viewers how she doesn’t remember what had happened, Richard Madeley challenged her as to whether she had made an effort to keep her drink safe as she was “aware” of the risk. Viewers were quick to take to social media to criticise his line of questioning, with many claiming he was “victim-blaming”.
Discussing the “scary” incident, the teenager, Gemma, explained how she felt after realising she’d been spiked.
“But had you been taking precautions?” asked the broadcaster.
He added: “Obviously, you’re aware of the risk of drinks being spiked – had you been trying to protect your drink?
“Did you keep your hand over it, have you kept it with you – do you remember that?”
“Yeah,” Gemma replied. “Well, it’s sort of second nature now because we’ve been told for so long that we need to be careful of who’s near our drinks.
“So if I did leave it, it was left with my friend and it was ‘watch my drink’.
“We were sat at a table and it wasn’t particularly busy where we were sat so it’s still a bit of a mystery as to how it happened but you see people finding opportunities wherever they can.
“And all it would have taken was one tiny distraction-“
Co-presenter Susanna Reid, 50, cut in to argue: “Honestly, it’s not your responsibility to take precautions to stop someone who does maliciously put something in your drink.”
She continued: “I mean, how on earth anyone is expected to constantly watch a drink, I don’t know – but Gemma it must have been completely upsetting for you.”
Posting on Twitter, La P’tite Patisserie wrote: “@GMB the responsibility should not be on young women to cover their drinks #richardmadeley and this victim-blaming view should not be promoted by news presenters who have such a large platform. Do better. #GMB.”
Sonja Pinnell echoed this argument. They penned: “That’s right Richard, let’s question the girl if she was careful enough! #gmb.”
“Why is Richard questioning if this poor girl that got spiked was careful enough? Victim blaming yet again #GMB,” Caitlin Straughan commented.
Lu agreed: “First Richard assumes the bloke on the TV is police commissioner, now he’s interrogating a girl about how careful she was protecting her drink even tho she was spike injected. #GMB.”
“@GMB interviewing a uni student who had been spiked… “but we’re you taking precautions to make sure that you didn’t get spiked? Hand over to drink etc?” Jesus #GMB,” Neil Williams posted.
Chelsea added: “I see the typical victim-blaming happening from a male.
“Asking if she took the correct precautions to protect herself and her drink. Thank goodness Susanna said it shouldn’t come down to women to protect themselves 24/7 #GMB.”
Hannah mirrored the view, sharing: “Sounded like victim-blaming, asking if she took precautions.
“You wouldn’t ask that of someone who was physically attacked, or house was burgled #gmb.”
Good Morning Britain airs weekdays at 6am on ITV.
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