Environmental health should be Government priority, says CIEH

  • Occupational Health
food hygeine
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Peninsula Team, Peninsula Team

(Last updated )

Environmental health funding should be increased to reflect rising health inequalities and protect public health, the Chartered Institute of Environment Health has said in their new manifesto.

With three weeks until the general election polls open, the CIEH is calling on the Government to commit to increased funding to support regulatory and Environmental Health functions in local authorities.

CIEH point to their 2021 workforce survey in England, which revealed that 56% of local authorities reported vacancies in their Environmental Health teams that had been left unfilled for 6 months or more.

They say that sustained investment in the environmental health workforce will ensure fully qualified and experienced professionals are available to properly protect public health and alleviate pressure on the NHS.

The manifesto calls for a number of changes to the way environmental health is regulated, including professional consultation on health policies, simplifications of the regulatory system, an increased role in Border security with regards to food law, and the establishment of a Chief Environmental Health Officer to provide strategic oversight.

Louise Hosking, Executive Director of Environmental Health at CIEH, said:

“We are excited to launch our General Election campaign, which is designed to bring environmental health to the forefront of political discussions.

“Our manifesto, co-produced with our member-led Advisory Panels, provides a clear roadmap for addressing key environmental health issues. Our pledge campaign aims to create meaningful partnerships with MPs, making it an ideal time for our members to get involved.

“With many new faces expected in Parliament, this is a unique opportunity to influence a new generation of policymakers and ensure that environmental health becomes a priority.

“We encourage all our members to join us in this effort by downloading our letter template and writing to their parliamentary candidates.

“By working together, we can make a significant impact during this critical pre-election period and put environmental health firmly on the political agenda.”

CIEH is encouraging prospective parliamentary candidates to pledge to engage with environmental health issues, elevate environmental health’s profile in parliament, and collaborate to establish an All-Party Parliamentary Group to drive discussion and action in Parliament.

CIEH members can get involved by writing in to their local candidates, asking them to sign up to the pledge campaign.

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