Dailymail.co.uk: 'What kind of human sinks this low?' Autism group slams Don Burke for linking his undiagnosed Asperger's to sexual harassment allegations against him

Don Burke, 70, told A Current Affair he has undiagnosed Asperger’s syndrome Former host of Logie-winning Burke’s Backyard said he can’t read social cuesAutism Awareness Australia slammed him for making claim amid accusations 

Stephen Johnson For Daily Mail Australia

Don Burke has angered an Autism Awareness group by linking harassment accusations against him to his undiagnosed Asperger’s syndrome.

The embattled former television personality and Order of Australia medallist says he can’t read social cues because he’s on the autism spectrum.

‘I haven’t been medically diagnosed but I’ve worked it out that that’s what I’ve got, and what it is, and it’s a terrible failing,’ he told A Current Affair host Tracy Grimshaw on Monday night.

‘I can look in a lens but I have real difficulty looking anyone in the eye. 

Don Burke claims his undiagnosed Asperger's syndrome is behind harassment allegations

Don Burke claims his undiagnosed Asperger's syndrome is behind harassment allegations

Don Burke claims his undiagnosed Asperger’s syndrome is behind harassment allegations

An Autism Awareness group slammed Don Burke for linking claims to his Asperger's syndrome

An Autism Awareness group slammed Don Burke for linking claims to his Asperger's syndrome

An Autism Awareness group slammed Don Burke for linking claims to his Asperger’s syndrome

‘It’s a typical thing. I miss all their body language and often the subtle signs that people give to you like “back off, that’s enough”. I don’t see that.’

The 70-year-old former host of Burke’s Backyard, which won six Logie awards, claimed his Asperger’s was a ‘terrible problem’.

‘No one can understand how you can’t see it, but you don’t,’ he said.

However, Autism Awareness Australia is angered the former Nine Network personality had used undiagnosed Asperger’s to excuse ‘his appalling behaviour. 

Don Burke told A Current Affair host Tracy Grimshaw he had trouble reading social cues

Don Burke told A Current Affair host Tracy Grimshaw he had trouble reading social cues

Don Burke told A Current Affair host Tracy Grimshaw he had trouble reading social cues

Autism Awareness Australia said Don Burke's interview was worthy of a Gold Logie award

Autism Awareness Australia said Don Burke's interview was worthy of a Gold Logie award

Autism Awareness Australia said Don Burke’s interview was worthy of a Gold Logie award

‘What kind of human sinks this low?,’ they tweeted after his Nine Network interview.

‘Don Burke blaming the women and his “Aspergers” is the last desperate act of a man going down. It was a Gold Logie performance!.’

Burke, who hosted his own top-rating gardening program on the Nine Network from 1987 to 2004, was nominated for a Gold Logie in 2000 but missed out to former Blue Heelers actress Lisa McCune.

His reputation is now in tatters after two former producers of his program told the ABC he had allegedly harassed them.

Bridget Ninness alleged Burke made remarks to her during a work trip to Greece were continuing to psychologically haunt her.

Former Burke's Backyard producer Bridget Ninness tearfully recalled working for Don Burke

Former Burke's Backyard producer Bridget Ninness tearfully recalled working for Don Burke

Former Burke’s Backyard producer Bridget Ninness tearfully recalled working for Don Burke

‘Don pulled me aside and he said “I’m just going to tell you that if anything goes wrong on this trip I’m going to rip your f***ing head off, and sh** down your throat”,’ she said, before being moved to tears.

‘So — and I actually vomited, I was actually so nervous that I vomited.

‘I’ve tried so hard to put this experience out of my head.’

Burke told the Nine Network’s A Current Affair he had never made that threat.

‘I never said anything remotely like that to anyone I’ve ever worked with or anyone I know,’ he said.

‘Anybody that does say that should be run out of town on a rail. It’s despicable.’ 

Another former producer Louise Langdon alleged Don Burke assaulted her in Alice Springs

Another former producer Louise Langdon alleged Don Burke assaulted her in Alice Springs

Another former producer Louise Langdon alleged Don Burke assaulted her in Alice Springs

Don Burke has denied the allegations made against him by his former female TV producers

Don Burke has denied the allegations made against him by his former female TV producers

Don Burke has denied the allegations made against him by his former female TV producers

Another former work colleague Louise Langdon, who worked as a producer on his 2UE radio program in Sydney and on his TV show during the 1980s, alleges Burke assaulted her during a trip to Alice Springs.

‘He was saying it in a joking way, “It’s too hot up here. It’s too hot up here. You don’t need so many clothes on”,’ she told the ABC.

She also accused Burke of showing her a video of a woman having sex with a male donkey, and making constant remarks about sex.

‘He encouraged me to look at this video which was exactly as he described it. I was just speechless. What do you do when your boss is showing you this thing?’,’ she told the ABC.

‘Dealing with Don Burke was an endurance test in terms of his persistence in commentary about anything sexual.’ 

Burke also denied the allegation he tried to removed Langdon’s top during a work trip in the Northern Territory.

‘I certainly wouldn’t have done it seriously,’ he told A Current Affair.

‘Researchers didn’t come with us on work trips.’ 

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