Celebrity Big Brother: Anti-domestic violence charity defends Roxanne Pallett

Celebrity Big Brother Summer 2018

An anti-domestic violence charity has defended Roxanne Pallett's actions on Celebrity Big Brother.

It follows a controversial 'altercation' between Roxanne and Ryan Thomas in Thursday's highlights show. Ryan was given a formal warning by Big Brother after Roxanne complained that he had been 'violent' towards her.

She claimed in the Diary Room: "I'm just a little bit in shock. I went from being upset to angry now. He actually punched me like a boxer would punch a bag. It wasn't banter, it wasn't a joke."

The vast majority of viewers felt Roxanne overreacted with many even calling for her to be removed from the house.

However some have come to Roxanne's defence, including, anti-domestic violence charity Women's Aid.

The charity's head of campaigns and public affairs, Sian Hawkins told the Daily Mirror: "Play fighting may not seem serious but if you have been in an abusive relationship it can seem frightening and even trigger memories of the abuse.

"Domestic abuse means you don't feel safe in your home environment, and as a woman who has previously spoken about being in a violent and abusive relationship, Roxanne clearly did not feel comfortable going to sleep in the same room as someone who had physically hurt her, even if that was not his intention."

She added: "An estimated 1.2 million women experienced domestic abuse last year alone; while you might not think you know someone who has experienced domestic abuse, it is highly likely that you do.

"That’s why it is so important for us to show understanding and empathy for someone who is clearly upset by certain behaviours rather than blaming them for overreacting. For any survivors out there, you are not alone. Women's Aid is always here to listen to you, believe you and support you."

A rep for Roxanne added to the newspaper: "Roxanne has no contact with the outside world to make her own statement; however, we do know that Roxanne has worked closely with various domestic violence charities due to being a victim of domestic violence herself.

"She would be very upset to find out she may have caused offence to others who have been through the same.

"We can’t make any more comment at present until such time as Roxanne is out of the Big Brother house and is able to address this situation herself."

Celebrity Big Brother 2018 continues nightly on Channel 5.

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