Love Island is set to return to TV next week after 18 months off-air and producers are taking steps to keep the new stars safe.
The return of the series, which was cancelled last year due to the coronavirus outbreak, marks the first time the summer season has aired since the heartbreaking death of host Caroline Flack.
Caroline, who tragically took her own life at age 40 on February 15 2020, hosted the hugely popular dating show from 2015 to 2019.
Laura Whitmore, 36, who took over presenting commitments last year, previously shared a tribute to her former colleague on Instagram which read: “Caroline I hope we do you proud.”
She also urged fans to respect the contestants ahead of the show’s return.
Laura added: “Hope you enjoy talking about them and following their journey and just a reminder to treat them with love, compassion and respect when they leave the show and go back to real life.”
Former contestants Sophie Gradon, 32 and Mike Thalassitis, 26, and presenter Caroline, 40, who were all associated with the show, died after taking their own lives.
ITV bosses have since updated their set ‘duty of care’ guidelines which will be followed as the show returns to TV next week.
Provisions included a minimum of eight therapy sessions for each Islander on their return home, as well as ‘proactive contact’ from the team for 14 months afterwards.
Love Island 2016 contestant Sophie took her own life in June 2018, while Mike, 26, who appeared on the show in 2017, was found dead in a park near his north London home in March 2019.
Popular presenter Caroline had stepped down from the show amid assault charges and died in February last year.
In the days that followed fans were called for the show to be pulled but as series seven is now set to air, producers have taken steps to support contestants.
As well as counselling they will also be taught how to manage their finances and given advice on taking on management after the show.
Everyone cast on the show will go through strict psychological and medical assessments to make sure they can cope with the pressures it entails.
They will also be talked through the impact taking part in the show will have on their lives – both the good and the bad.
It’s likely the new cast will be better prepared to tackle the ups and downs of fame, and Love Island have even taken the step to warn viewers not to troll them.
In a statement, show bosses wrote: “We can’t wait to watch them get to know each other, date and maybe even find the one.
“We are so grateful they’re letting us follow their journey this summer. We hope you enjoy the show, but please think before you post.”
Love Island returns to TV on June 28.