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Labour considers ‘ambitious’ physical activity targets

Labour is looking at introducing an ‘ambitious’ public health target to get half the population taking recommended levels of exercise, in plans being developed for the next election manifesto, shadow health secretary Andy Burnham has said.

Pulse understands the plans are ‘not fully worked through’, but signal Mr Burnham’s intention to devise an ambitious target on physical activity in time for the next election.

Mr Burnham’s comments were made at a summit on physical activity in London yesterday.

According to the Daily Telegraph, Mr Burnham said increasing physical activity levels will be the ‘cornerstone’ of public health policy if Labour is elected, centred on a new target to get half of Britain taking enough exercise by 2025.

Labour health advisors confirmed to Pulse they were ‘looking at’ the target, based on exercise levels recommended by the chief medical officer, but said it was not yet in the manifesto.

A spokesperson said: ‘It’s not yet a manifesto commitment – it’s not fully worked through. It’s to signal [Mr Burnham’s] intention to come up with some kind of ambitious plan like that in time for the manifesto.

‘We need to do more research and convince people that should be in it. But we do want something that ambitious as a public health physical activity target in there, but whether it is exactly at that level is not decided yet.’


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