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Love Island contestants to be given training ahead of next series

Love Island has announced the new duty of care procedures being introduced for the show’s 10th series this summer.

The ITV2 dating show will return to our screens in June, with a new group of singletons looking for love in the villa.

On Wednesday (24 May), ITV laid out the new set of guidelines imposed on the islanders before, during and after their show.

After an “initial trial period” tested during the winter series in South Africa earlier this year, Love Island contestants will formally been asked to pause all their social media accounts during the series.

This initial measure was introduced to ensure that the cast members and their families are “protected from the adverse effects of social media”, and was praised by the show’s voice-over presenter, comedian Iain Stirling, who told The Independent in January that it was “insane that that happened before”.

All contestants on the 2023 summer series will complete video training and guidance across a range of topics, including mutually respectful behaviour in relationships, behaviour patterns associated with controlling and coercive behaviour and language around disability, sexuality, race and ethnicity, and microaggressions.

These training sessions will be completed before they meet their fellow Islanders, and will tackle topics including inclusive language and behaviour, creating safe spaces and being a good ally.

The inclusion training consists of conversations chaired by BCOMS (Black Collective of Media in Sport) founder Leon Mann MBE with diversity, equity and inclusion consultant Hayley Bennett, disability specialist Shani Dhanda and broadcaster Sean Fletcher.

Love Island will return for a new series this summer (ITV)
Love Island will return for a new series this summer (ITV)

Before appearing on the show, prospective islanders will also watch a video fronted by the show’s executive producer and head of welfare, interviewing former Islanders about their experiences on the show.

Topics discussed will include how to handle being constantly filmed, handling trolling on social media and adapting to life after the show.

Islanders will also be offered comprehensive psychological support, training on financial management, guidance and advice on taking on management, and a proactive aftercare package.

ITV has introduced extensive mental health guidelines for Love Island castmates following the deaths by suicide of former islanders Sophie Gradon in 2018 and Mike Thalassitis in 2019, as well as former presenter Caroline Flack in 2020.

If you are experiencing feelings of distress and isolation, or are struggling to cope, the Samaritans offers support; you can speak to someone for free over the phone, in confidence, on 116 123 (UK and ROI), email jo@samaritans.org, or visit the Samaritans website to find details of your nearest branch.

If you are based in the USA, and you or someone you know needs mental health assistance right now, call National Suicide Prevention Helpline on 1-800-273-TALK (8255). The Helpline is a free, confidential crisis hotline that is available to everyone 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If you are in another country, you can go to www.befrienders.org to find a helpline near you.