Coronation Street spoilers: Izzy Armstrong quits Underworld as she's summoned back to work

IZZY Armstrong quits Underworld as she’s summoned back to work next week in Coronation Street.  

Corrie star Cherylee Houston – who plays factory worker Izzy in the ITV soap – has worked with bosses on a storyline depicting the experiences of disabled workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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The actress has connective tissue disorder Ehlers-Danlos syndrome and has been shielding at home for the entire pandemic.

Viewers have already seen Underworld bosses Carla and Sarah develop a scheme to help Izzy work from home.

Next week, however, it becomes clear that Izzy has been struggling to keep up with the workload behind the scenes.

Cherlyee’s real-life partner, actor and comedian Toby Hadoke, is set to make an appearance as Izzy’s concerned neighbour Fergus in scenes filmed in the couple’s actual home.

Sarah will call Izzy to chase up some samples, but Fergus steps in and tells Sarah that Izzy needs to prioritise her health.

Later, Carla meets up with Jo Lafoe and presents her with Izzy’s samples, but it’s soon clear they’re not up to standard and an embarrassed Carla assures her there’s been a mix-up. 

Carla facetimes Izzy and confronts her, making clear that she isn’t working to a high enough standard. 

Carla tells Sarah that it’s time Izzy returned to the factory and that if she doesn’t, they’ll have to fire her.

Sarah calls Izzy and suggests she returns to work, but is surprised when she suddenly announces that she’d like to resign from her job.

Cherylee said of this storyline: "I have been unbelievably fortunate that my employers enabled me to continue shielding after the official shielding guidance ended in March. 

“I've been so supported by ITV, but I'm aware that many of my disabled peers who were previously shielding haven't had that safety and have been forced to make the decision to earn money to survive while facing the real fear of death or serious illness through Covid.

"There's 14.1 million people in the UK, that's 1 in 5 of us. We are employees, carers, front line workers, volunteers and a key part of every community. 

“The pandemic has had an incredible impact on many disabled people due to social isolation, certain services being unavailable and a lack of understanding.

"There's currently 4.4 million disabled workers in the UK. We experience almost double the unemployment statistics compared to our non disabled peers (mostly due to prejudice or lack of reasonable adjustments)."

Coronation Street Producer Iain MacLeod added: “We had to think outside the box in order to tell this story, devising new protocols and ways of scripting scenes that would allow Cherylee to film the scenes herself in her home. 

"It certainly helped that her partner Toby is a fabulous actor!

"Despite all the technical challenges we had to overcome, this was a story that needed telling and I hope it will resonate with millions of people who have found themselves in a similar position to Izzy – and perhaps open the eyes of millions of others who had little awareness of the issues facing disabled people during COVID.”

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