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Piglets: ‘Disgusting’ title of new ITV comedy criticised by Police Federation

Police leaders have criticised the title of new ITV comedy Piglets, calling it “highly offensive” and “a disgusting choice of language”.

Set in a fictional police training college, the programme’s name is an apparent reference to the term “pig” which has long been used as a derogatory slang word for police officers.

Tiffany Lynch, acting national chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales, which represents more than 145,000 rank and file officers, said the title “is highly offensive to police officers risking their lives to protect the public every day providing an emergency service”.

“It is a disgusting choice of language to use for the title of a TV programme,” Ms Lynch said.

“I find it incredulous that this has passed through checks and balances at an organisation made up of people who at any time have or may need the support and assistance of the police.”

“Insulting” officers who are currently under “relentless negative pressure” is “unhelpful”, she added.


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Ms Lynch said the show’s name was “inflammatory against a landscape of rising threats and violence against officers”.

“We should not be put at further risk for viewing numbers, our officers deserve respect, not humiliation for the job they are undertaking,” she added.

“It is incredibly dangerous to incite more negativity and misinformation against a public sector service that’s already under so much pressure.”

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Mukund Krishna, chief executive of the Police Federation, accused ITV of “undermining” the service and called the title “an insult to our brave and hard-working members at a time when the service is fighting to attract and retain officers”.

“The federation will be writing to Ofcom and ITV to register its disgust and demanding a change,” he added.

An ITV spokesman said: “Piglets is a fictional new comedy about a police training academy and the title is not intended to cause any offence, it’s a comedic and endearing play on words to emphasise the innocence and youth of our young trainees.”

Piglets – starring Mark Heap and Sarah Parish – is due to begin airing on 20 July and comes from the team behind comedies Smack The Pony and The Green Wing.

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