GMB: Portillo questions Susanna Reid over TV presenter pay
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Susanna Reid, 50, has apologised today after Good Morning Britain did not add the Professor title next to Professor Devi Sridhar’s name while she appeared on screen, but the programme did add the formal title to her male counterpart’s name Professor Angus Dalgleish. The TV presenter said she was “really sorry” that “inexplicably” Professor Devi’s title did not appear, but some viewers claimed it showed “subtle signs of misogyny” as they took to Twitter to air their anger.
A Twitter user called Admit_medics shared a side by side comparison of how Professor Devi’s name appeared on Good Morning Britain this morning without a title and how Professor Angus’ name was displayed including his full title.
They typed: “When are the media gonna stop doing this? @GMB.”
In response, Professor Devi typed: “Can women be professors in 2021?”
Immediately Susanna replied with an apology, as she implied the gaffe was an honest mistake.
The mum-of-three said: “I am really sorry that this happened. We introduced you with your title Professor but inexplicably it wasn’t on screen.”
However, it appeared there were no hard feelings from Professor Devi as she replied: “Innocent mistake- thanks always, Susanna.”
But some Twitter users were not as satisfied with Susanna’s justification over the incident.
Alltoowell55 wrote: “Ah a woman giving men the benefit of the doubt again. If it’s not deliberate then it’s terrible research, but yet the researchers didn’t forget to research the man’s title…”
Heatherharvey said: “They choose to do this, if we correct them we are, ‘petty’ but if we don’t then they get away with misrepresenting and disrespecting women and their achievements. Never used to worry about titles etc, still do not wish to, but forced into it by their selective usage by powers that be.”
While Tattie_j commented: “This is one of those subtle examples of misogyny that most don’t notice. But it’s exactly these small, possibly unconscious, differences in how men and women are treated that normalise the bigger differences. It snowballs.”
Crusherdane typed: “If this isn’t blatant sexism…”
Professor Devi is an Indian American public health researcher, who is both professor and Chair of Global Public Health at the University of Edinburgh.
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Her research considers the effectiveness of public health interventions and how to improve developmental assistance for health.
This morning she appeared on GMB to discuss ways to prevent Covid cases from climbing and also shared them on her Twitter account.
She wrote: “Happy Tues! Just off GMB pointing to 3 things we can do in UK as case’s climb: 1. Face coverings indoors in shops and public transport.
“2. Limit transmission in public indoor spaces through requiring either double vax or negative test result
“3. Vaccinate!! (incl. boosters).”(sic).
The UK is currently seeing extremely high case rates with infections at their highest level for almost three months.
Professor Neil Ferguson, from Imperial College London, has explained why cases are so high – and it is partly because our immunity is not currently as high as other Western European countries.
“Partly, we were very successful in getting vaccination rolled out early and we know that gradually immunity wanes over time after you’ve had that second dose, so how early we were means we are a bit more vulnerable,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
“Second, we relied more on the AstraZeneca vaccine and, while that protects very well against very severe outcomes of Covid, it protects slightly less well than Pfizer against infection and transmission, particularly in the face of the Delta variant.
“And finally, we just sit behind a few other countries, not dramatically, but we’re no longer in the top rank of European countries in terms of overall vaccination coverage, particularly vaccinating teenagers.”
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