UltraViolet is joining the hundreds of thousands of people praising TLC for canceling “19 Kids and Counting.” The show has been embroiled in controversy since May when news broke that Josh Duggar, one of the show’s stars, had been accused of molesting several young girls in the early 2000s.
The women’s group released a statement following TLC’s announcement that they had, in fact, decided to cancel the show. In the statement UltraViolet said they were “encouraged” by the networks decision. They had been pushing for TLC to cancel the show since shortly after the scandal hit the Web. It went on to say that “those that cover up child sexual abuse” should not be gifted with fame, money or airtime.
“We are encouraged to finally see TLC take a firm stand against child sexual abuse and permanently cancel '19 Kids and Counting.' Child sex abusers, and those that cover up child sexual abuse should never be rewarded with fame, fortune or a television show,” wrote Shaunna Thomas, co-founder of the organization.
UltraViolet has been very vocal about their wish to see “19 Kids” taken off the air. Not long after reports of Josh’s sexual misconduct surfaced, the group created and began circulating a petition to get TLC to cancel the show. The online document was signed by more than 60,000 men and women.
MORE: AP Exclusive: TLC cancels '19 Kids and Counting': http://t.co/pBa6Y6jpT4
— The Associated Press (@AP) July 16, 2015
TLC announced their decision in a statement released to the Associated Press. Marjorie Kaplan, group president of TLC, Animal Planet and Velocity networks told the publication that after nearly six weeks of deliberation, the network had decided cancellation was “the best way forward.” She said “19 Kids” would “no longer appear on the air.”
In addition to the cancellation news, Kaplan shared that TLC has partnered with RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) and Darkness to Light, two well-known child-protection organizations, for a campaign that will raise awareness about sexual abuse in children. Together they have created an hour long documentary that will feature commentary from sexual abuse survivors including "19 Kids and Counting" stars Jill Dillard and Jessa Seewald.
Jill and Jessa are currently the only victims of Josh’s that have spoken publicly about being molested. Both sisters appeared on Fox’s “The Kelly File,” hosted by Megyn Kelly, to separate fact from fiction in regards to the abuse. During the interview Jill and Jessa said their brother was simply "a young boy in puberty and a little too curious about girls." According to reports Josh also molested two other female Duggar children. At the time, one was just 5 years old. He also admitted to touching a friend of the family as she slept on a couch in the family home.