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ITV defends Eamonn Holmes following complaint about Meghan Markle comment

Ofcom concluded that Eamonn Holmes was unaware of the historic use of the word

Emmy Griffiths

ITV has defended Eamonn Holmes following a complaint that suggested he was racially insensitive to the Duchess of Sussex by describing her as "uppity" while chatting on This Morning. During the show, the presenter was discussing Meghan's appearance at Wimbledon, saying: "If you have an uppity attitude, you're only through the door two minutes and suddenly you're sitting at Wimbledon and your royal protection are saying, 'No photographs, no photographs!' If that was somebody in Canada, you would be writing [that] they’re right up their own backside."

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Meghan attending Wimbledon

A complaint was made to Ofcom about the word "uppity", which is historically a racial insult. ITV released a statement about the incident to HELLO!, which said: "Eamonn Holmes was absolutely not reprimanded for his use of the word 'uppity'. Conversations took place with Eamonn and the wider production team involving an explanation of a possible interpretation of the word, which had come to light on the basis of a complaint made to the channel after the broadcast. Therefore this was a point of learning for the wider team, not in any way a rebuke."

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The statement continued: "It is incorrect to state that there is an ITV ban on the word uppity. There is no such ban on the word 'uppity' per se, rather care will be taken regarding the context of its use." ITV's Head of Diversity, Ade Rawcliffe, added: "Eamonn was unaware of the history of the term 'uppity' and how it could be interpreted when describing Meghan Markle. We are not saying that ignorance is in any way a defence, he was using the term to describe what he interpreted as arrogance." ITV also confirmed that Ofcom did not pursue the complaint.

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