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Well done Carole Ford, who has complained to Ofcom about Channel 5’s misuse of the word “skiver” when referring to people convicted of benefit fraud in the programme Sick Note Skivers Exposed.

In the programme, broadcast at 8pm on July 15, she explains: “All the cases referred to in the programme were cases of criminal fraud. Despite this, the show continually used the term ‘skiver’ interchangeably with ‘fraudster’.

“In one case, the narrator said that the ‘skiver’ was found guilty of seven counts of fraud by the court and the judge told him he was a ‘common criminal’.

“The show had nothing to do with monitoring sick absence, which was only occasionally referred to.

“On the Department [for] Work and Pensions’ own figures, benefit fraud is a negligible 0.7 per cent. The effect will be to encourage public animosity to sick/disabled people. I contend that this is a misrepresentation of the subject of sick absence from work and/or fraudulent claiming of disability benefits.”

If you wish to support Carole’s complaint, Ofcom can be contacted via this link.

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