Should eating on public transport be banned?
PUBLISHED: 09:08 10 October 2019 | UPDATED: 09:33 10 October 2019
Experts have said eating on public transport should be banned in a bid to stop childhood obesity.
Chief Medical Officer for England, Professor Dame Sally Davies, has used her final report to demand action from ministers, which includes prohibiting eating and drinking on public transport to stop children snacking.
This comes after a report which reveals that the government will fail to meet its target to halve childhood obesity.
With 1.2 million children now clinically obese, Dame Sally said more must be done to stop youngsters "drowning in a flood of unhealthy food or drink options."
Dame Sally Davies said: "The Government ambition is to halve childhood obesity by 2030 - in England, we are nowhere near achieving this. Yet, if we are bold, we can achieve this goal.
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"Unhealthy options appear to flow freely, flooding high streets, shops and checkouts. Adverts are everywhere, from bus stops to our mobile phones. Children are explicitly targeted with sophisticated techniques.
"Politicians, I call on all of you across the political spectrum to come together and take action. The health of our children is in your hands."
Dame Sally has also called for the successful tax on sugary drinks to be extended to milk drinks that contain added sugar, such as milkshakes, and for ministers to consider plain packaging for unhealthy food.
Her report puts her at odds with Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has made clear his concerns over "sin taxes" such as the sugar tax, and what he sees as "the continuing creep of the nanny state".
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: "Professor Dame Sally Davies has done more than anyone to promote the health of the nation over a decade as CMO. Her parting report is no different and we will study it closely and act on the evidence."