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Hemel Hempstead MP slams Channel 4 over ‘very selective’ benefits show

Hemel Hempstead MP and minister of state for disabled people Mike Penning, third from left, on a visit to the Hertfordshire Action on Disability's head office earlier this month.

Hemel Hempstead MP and minister of state for disabled people Mike Penning, third from left, on a visit to the Hertfordshire Action on Disability's head office earlier this month.

A documentary about the UK benefits system was criticised by Mike Penning after he appeared on the show’s live TV debate.

Hemel Hempstead MP Mr Penning represented the Conservatives on Channel 4’s Benefits Street: The Live Debate on Monday night, and said the show was ‘very selective’ about what scenes it chose to broadcast.

He said: “The producers said it was supposed to be all about the community, but that’s a load of tosh – and I told them that. They chose to focus on the benefits and even after 18 months of filming, they didn’t include many of the residents of James Turner Street, such as the pensioners and those who do work.”

But Mr Penning said the show and the debate had highlighted the need to take another look at the welfare system. He said: “I said it on Monday and I’ll say it again now – it has to be fair.”

 

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