ITV has responded to an open letter accusing Piers Morgan of “bullying and harassment.”
The open letter was signed by upwards of 600 TV workers calling for ITV to denounce bullying – which it has done – after Piers engaged in a heated exchange on Twitter.
The broadcaster ruled that no internal investigation will be set in motion – clarifying that it does not monitor or control Good Morning Britain host Piers’ social media, and that a tweet that sparked the letter was not accusing Piers of bullying while he was working on Life Stories.
ITV chiefs Kevin Lygo and Carolyn McCall have made it plain that bullying is not tolerated at the network, and while Piers does work on a number of its shows, he is a freelancer and has sole control over his own social media output.
ITV’s statement reads: “ITV takes any allegations of bullying and harassment in the workplace very seriously indeed, and we are clear there is absolutely no place for it in ITV.
“We have an independent whistleblowing helpline which we communicate through our induction process and which we monitor on an on-going basis, in addition to our internal grievance procedures channels, which are open to both permanent members of staff and freelancers.
“Our firm understanding is that in this instance, the tweet in question was not accusing Piers of bullying and harassment whilst working on Life Stories. Having spoken to both parties, there is therefore no internal investigation.”
It continued: “In terms of the separate issue of social media exchanges, we understand some producers wish to express their views on their personal platforms, and we also think it is widely understood that Piers is a prolific and long-standing user of social media where he is well known for engaging in robust, heated exchanges, when criticism is levelled against him.
“However, Twitter accounts and the decision to comment on each other are their personal choices.
“Piers is a freelance presenter and we do not control his output on social media, or the other media platforms he writes for.”
The statement concluded: “To reiterate, we are clear there is no room for bullying at ITV and it is not tolerated. We are supportive and engaged members of Coalition for Change, and we will continue to work productively with colleagues across the industry.”
The Mirror has contacted Piers’ reps for comment.