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Tuesday, 04 December 2018

LBC warned after presenter's 'potentially highly offensive' comments about blind people

Written by Sherna Noah

Radio station LBC has been warned that it could face sanctions if it continues to breach broadcasting regulations with "offensive content".

Watchdog Ofcom found that Steve Allen's early-morning show broke broadcasting rules with "potentially highly offensive" comments about blind people.

The DJ was talking about a blind man who is scared of dogs and intended to use a guide horse rather than a guide dog.

LBC has previously been found in breach of rules on offensive content with comments Allen made about the Traveller community and Portuguese people.

An Ofcom spokeswoman said: "Our investigation found that the presenter's comments about blind people were potentially highly offensive, and were not justified by the context.

"This is not the first time that LBC has broken our rules on offensive content, as a result of comments made by this presenter.

"We have issued LBC with a warning that any further breaches could result in a statutory sanction."

LBC said that Allen was "expressing genuine surprise" at the news story about guide horses" and "his intention was not to treat the blind community with insensitivity".

It said that it had made improvements to its compliance processes for Allen's programme as a result of this case.

Potential sanctions can include financial penalties and having to broadcast a statement of Ofcom's findings.

Copyright (c) Press Association Ltd. 2018, All Rights Reserved. Picture (c) Rebecca Naden / PA Wire.