Published Wednesday, 05 March 2014
Emmerdale's Ruby Haswell, played by Alicya Eyo. (© ITV)
Some viewers expressed their shock last week after a scene aired in which new character William, played by Dudley Sutton, made a racist remark to Ruby Haswell, played by Alicya Eyo.
Ofcom have confirmed they received 15 complaints about the episode.
However a spokesperson from Emmerdale has defended the scene and insisted it was an "important issue" to address.
They also confirmed the storyline will be developed further and the character of William will appear in six more episodes.
Speaking to news website The Voice, the spokesperson added: "The storyline involving Ruby and William explores the important issue of prejudice and how it is dealt with.
"In subsequent episodes we see Ruby challenge William about his racism and confront him with the hurt that such language causes.
"In the end, through professionalism and determination she succeeds in making him aware that his remarks aren't just casual 'banter', as he believes, but are deeply offensive. As a result he is seen to change his ways."
© UTV News