Thousands of enraged I'm a Celebrity fans back petition to ban 'cruel' use of animals in trials

I'm a Celebrity fans call to 'end cruelty to live creatures' on the show

I'm a Celebrity
(Image credit: ITV)

I'm a Celebrity fans have flocked in their thousands to sign their names to a petition, "I’m A Living Creature...Get Me Out of Here: End cruelty of live creatures on ITV now", which calls for a ban on the use of live animals in Bushtucker trials.

Following an outpour of concern for the live animals, such as rats, snakes, and lizards, used in the trials, viewer Linda Goodman set up the petition on change.org to stop the "torture" of the creatures for entertainment purposes. 

So far it has been signed by almost 5,000 people.

The petition is aimed at ITV chief executive Carolyn McCall and director of television Kevin Lygo.

The petition states: "For years, members of the public and animal welfare organisations, including the RSPCA in NSW Australia, and now here in the UK, have expressed their concerns to ITV about the treatment of live creatures being used for 'entertainment' on ITV's I'm a Celebrity ... Get me out of here.

"Having ceased watching your show years ago for this reason, I had hoped that, as a Welsh resident, perhaps this year things would be different.

"But relocation to Wales has sadly not meant a change in the exploitation of non-human creatures that has prevailed in your Australian shows for so many years.

"What does this unethical treatment of living creatures teach children? And when it has been well-established that the link between the abuse of vulnerable humans so often starts with the abuse of non-human creatures, it is shameful that ITV still considers public entertainment is well-served by using this same jaded, unethical format."

Linda went on to urge members of the public to support the cause, adding: "While your production teams remain so lacking in creativity and ethics that they are incapable of setting challenges for 'celebrities' that don't involve the abuse of 'non-human' creatures, I urge caring members of the public to join me and  #BoycottImACelebrity2020."

Viewers agreed with Linda's statement, with one commenting: "I heartily agree and can't watch this programme because of its cruelty and stupidity… 

"I'm relieved that I am not alone in viewing this programme as repulsive and cruel. How on earth this can be considered to be entertainment and is still being shown is unbelievable."

Another added: "I'm signing because entertainment shouldn't be like this. All life is precious. Please stop."