Taking a closer look at takeaways near schools to tackle childhood obesity rates

Brent Labour is proposing to radically limit the development of further takeaways near schools in a new bid to control the growing obesity epidemic in the borough.

The proposals, will prohibit any new takeaways within 400 metres of secondary schools or further education establishments, and will place a cap of six per cent on shop frontage for hot food takeaway in any town or neighbourhood centre.

The proposals are part of the council’s Brent Obesity Strategy developed in response to statistics from the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) for the borough of Brent showing 11 percent of under 5s and 24 percent of 12 year olds in the borough are obese.

Local residents will get the opportunity to have their say on the proposals in a full consultation process following the election period. If approved, the proposals could be in place next year.

Around one in four of our 12 year olds in Brent is obese, so promoting healthy eating is one of the most important things council and our partners can do.

These proposals will not only limit fast food outlets near schools, but will also place a cap on how many fast food outlets can be permitted in town centres

Controlling the number of fast food outlets directly addresses the link between obesity and availability of junk food. The aim is to encourage our children and other residents to make healthier choices and increase the diversity of retail and food outlets.

Labour is already doing a lot on this issue in Brent, such as offering free swimming to under-16s during school holidays, free tennis for young people, encouraging healthy lifestyles among families with young children. It’s not going to be easy but we are committed to doing everything we can to achieve these goals.