Photo Credit: Christopher Peterson/BuzzFoto
With Jon Gosselin in court (with or without Kate Gosselin) practically every week now, we totally forgot about Pennsylvania's lawsuit against TLC's Jon & Kate Plus 8. Ring a bell? The Dept. of Labor in the Gosselins' home state has been investigating the TLC series for the past year, after receiving a complaint that child labor laws were violated.
Kate's brother and sister-in-law (the Gosselin kids' "Uncle Kevin" and "Aunt Jodi") were set to testify at Wednesday's hearing, which determined whether the case would advance. Ultimately, the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry decided not to file charges against the show's producers.
The Labor Department seeks to prevent the exploitation of children in this suit, but will calling estranged relatives to the stand prove to be a sensible move? Kate's brother Kevin Krieder and his wife, Jodi, have been among Jon & Kate Plus 8's most outspoken critics. J&K+8 fans may remember Kate's sister-in-law as "Aunt Jodi," a frequent babysitter who mysteriously vanished from the show in 2008. (According to an infamous blog post by Jodi's sister Julia -- now deleted, but reprinted here -- Jodi and Kevin disappeared after TLC offered to make them paid cast members. Kate was reportedly so offended by the idea of her brother "making money off MY family" that she cut Aunt Jodi and Uncle Kevin out of the children's lives.)
Since they left the show, Jodi and Kevin have taken up the cause of "protecting" their nieces and nephews. Along with celebrity attorney Gloria Allred (who's also testifying at the hearing), they have pleaded for legal action against reality shows that feature children under 18 -- particularly the one that stars their nieces and nephews. (See the interview below, from October.)
Of course, plenty of people suspect Jodi and Kevin's "concern" is a smoke screen for revenge, since the couple was denied star status (and a paycheck) from TLC. Also testifying against TLC was Paul Peterson, a former child star (he was on The Donna Reed Show), whose nonprofit foundation is dedicated to the protection of child performers.
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Do you think the Gosselin kids were exploited by Jon & Kate Plus 8? Chime in below!