CIEH advocates for stronger public health protections in letter to new Defra Secretary

13 November 2023, Ciaran Donaghy

The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) today reached out to Rt Hon Steve Barclay MP, the newly appointed Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, advocating for robust public health protections as a foundation for a resilient economy and societal wellbeing.

In a detailed letter, penned by Louise Hosking, Executive Director of Environmental Health at CIEH, the Institute congratulated the Secretary of State on his new role and underscored the critical mission shared by the CIEH and Defra: to improve and protect the environment and stimulate a green economy. The letter emphasises that environmental health practitioners are vital in maintaining public health protections, which are essential to economic productivity and prosperity.

CIEH challenges the prevailing narrative that 'Smarter Regulation' is a unilateral economic catalyst, stressing that regulation must be both smart and strong to safeguard environmental health without compromising long-term sustainability and public safety.

CIEH remains committed to a constructive partnership with Defra to advance the role of Environmental Health Practitioners in the fabric of public health protection and to champion regulations that enhance public health and environmental safeguards.

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

"We are at a crossroads where the decisions we make now will shape the health of our environment and society for years to come. It is imperative that we do not equate deregulation with economic growth when it could lead to diminished public health standards.

We look forward to engaging with Defra to ensure that our shared goals for safer, cleaner, healthier environments and a robust economy are achieved in a way that benefits everyone."

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