Which issues have been highlighted by EastEnders?
Throughout its 21 year history, EastEnders has strived to highlight important social issues with sensitivity and accuracy. These are just a few of the major subjects that the show has tackled.
underwent radiotherapy for breast cancer
in 1996 but it returned in 1999. She then faced a mastectomy
. "Soaps take an issue and really do their homework," says Barbara Windsor
. "Peggy's storyline encouraged a lot of charities to get more recognition."
suffered months of abuse
at the hands of her tyrannical husband, Trevor
. The story coincided with the BBC's Hitting Home season
which aimed to raise debate about domestic violence. Over 17,000 people rang the BBC
in response to the campaign.
When Nick Cotton
succumbed to heroin addiction
, his long-suffering mum Dot
was forced into action. After scoring him his last hit, Dot barricaded him in his room and forced him to go 'cold turkey'
. He escaped through a window and murdered Eddie Royle
. Nick eventually kicked his addiction but continued to deal drugs.
during a wild phase of his life. His story dispelled the myth that HIV is an automatic death sentence. He lived with the condition for 13 years
of an AIDS related illness. The Terrence Higgins Trust
worked with the production team for the duration of Mark's story.
spent two months sleeping rough
after running away from home. She was targeted by a brothel madam called Roxy. She gave Zoe shelter, but tried to force her into prostitution
. Zoe was rescued on Christmas Day
when she was 14. She was raped a second time by her boss, James Willmott Brown
Kathy initially received hostile treatment
from the police when she reported the rape, although Wilmott Brown was eventually imprisoned. A senior police officer praised
the show's treatment of the issue.
was humiliated when his family found out that he couldn't read or write. Keith soon started adult literacy classes, and son Darren
helped him out as well. The storyline was tied in with the BBC's RAW
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(Stacey) originally auditioned for a part in the Miller family.