Directors of Public Health back ‘bold action’ on childhood obesity

October 10, 2019 in ADPH Updates, Children, Young People and Familes, Obesity, nutrition and physical activity by admin

ADPH responds to CMO’s report on Childhood Obesity

The Association of Directors of Public Health, and our members, welcome Professor Dame Sally Davies’ report on childhood obesity and her recommendation for further ‘bold action’ from the Government, to realise its ambition to halve childhood obesity by 2030.

Dr Jeanelle de Gruchy, President of ADPH and Director of Public Health for Tameside commented:

“The report clearly presents the evidence of the ways that social and commercial determinants of health overwhelmingly shape our weight. We support the recommendations to address these, particularly those tackling the production, supply, marketing and sale of high calorie sugar and fat foods. This is something our members have frequently called for, and we note there is strong public support for it as well.

We were also pleased to see the emphasis on creating healthy places that give children ample opportunity to be active and healthy. Directors of Public Health have long played a key role in promoting children’s health in their areas, including by leading whole system approaches to obesity, of which the built environment is a core part.

National action that supports this local leadership is much welcomed, and also requires more investment in local councils and public health to be truly effective.”

Professor Jim McManus, Vice-President of ADPH and Director of Public Health for Hertfordshire said:

“It should be a fundamental right for all children to grow up in an environment that promotes, rather than harms, their health. Yet, as this report shows, it is not the case in England.

Professor Davies has issued a comprehensive and credible wake-up call about the scale of childhood obesity in modern Britain and the impact not just on health but on our children’s life chances.

Returning the right to healthy, active lives to our children requires a renewed sense of purpose and bold, decisive action from the Government and industry. Without this, not only will we fall short of achieving the goal of halving childhood obesity by 2030, but also fail our children, their health and future.”