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Health Inequalities

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 6:26 pm on 4th March 2020.

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Photo of James Daly James Daly Conservative, Bury North 6:26 pm, 4th March 2020

At the start of the debate, the Under-Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, my hon. Friend Jo Churchill, asked for suggestions on how we can level up the health inequalities that affect all our constituencies. Representing the people of Ramsbottom, Tottington and Bury, I think the following policy proposals would go some way towards addressing the Marmot policy objectives.

First, in Bury, we need to strengthen our mainstream provision for primary-age children with autistic spectrum conditions and for children with social, emotional and mental health needs. We need to create two bases with outreach capacity to sustain pupils in their school with extra support, giving every child the best start in life.

We need to fund a learning disability hub, which would change how people with disabilities access support across Bury. This would involve the development of an accessible hub to provide information, advice, care and support to individuals whose lives are affected by disability, enabling all children and young people to maximise their capabilities and to have control of their life.

We need to create fair employment and good work for all. Bury College has received millions of pounds of Government investment for a proposed health and life sciences hub. We are now asking for further investment to create a digital and creative industry skills hub to provide the skilled jobs that my constituents need and to upskill all my constituents, no matter what their background.

Marmot’s main policy objectives relate to public health and prevention, and I ask the Under-Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, my hon. Friend Ms Dorries, to consider initiating a pilot in Bury for an integrated public health hub that would put all public health services together in one place. The hub would address substance abuse, as well as dietary and all wellbeing matters. More specifically, it would encourage a healthy and active lifestyle.

In Bury, we need to encourage people to become involved in sport and activity. Sites such as Gigg Lane, the home of Bury football club, are perfect facilities to inspire youngsters who are not involved in an active lifestyle to change their ways, and to become involved in their community and in a public health world to which they have not previously been introduced. Public health services should not be in an office block; they should be in open, attractive places that encourage young people to become involved.

Those proposals would have impact on my constituents, benefiting their health outcomes and life chances.