​BBC probed for airing UKIP backing child’s ‘get the foreigners out’ comment

Reuters / Toby Melville
The BBC is under investigation by broadcast media regulator Ofcom for airing a news bulletin featuring a child saying he would vote UKIP “to get all the foreigners out.”

The primary school child’s comment was aired on a BBC East Midlands Today news slot on April 15 and was available to watch online.

The bulletin showed Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary Tristram Hunt visiting a school in the region. When he asked a 10-year-old boy which party he would have voted for to win last month’s election he received an “unexpected” reply.

Err… UKIP,” the young boy replied. When Hunt asked him why, the boy said “to get all of the foreigners out.”

Ofcom is examining whether the BBC paid “due care and attention” to the child’s welfare, as he was easily identifiable in the broadcast.

Hostile reaction to his remarks “could have been foreseen,” the regulator claimed.

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In a statement, an Ofcom spokesman said they have “opened an investigation into a news item on BBC1 East Midlands to establish whether due care was taken of the welfare of a child who appeared in the program.”

Section 1.28 of the broadcasting code says due care “must be taken over the physical and emotional welfare and the dignity of people under 18 who take part or are otherwise involved in programs.”

Section 1.29 says people under 18 “must not be caused unnecessary distress or anxiety by their involvement in programs or by the broadcast of those programs.”

During the run up to the general election, the divorced wife of an ex-UKIP candidate claimed their child had an egg thrown at his face while openly campaigning for the party.

She said young children “shouldn’t know what they are talking about because none of them at that age should know anything to do with politics.”

One Twitter user said it is “wrong to push politics on children.”