FSRH formally supports Do No Harm amendment to the EU (Withdrawal) Bill

Posted 26 April 2018

Date: 26 Apr 2018

Type: FSRH News and Information

FSRH, together with the Faculty of Public Health (FPH) and other organisations, have written to party leaders to urge them to support the Do No Harm amendment to the EU (Withdrawal) Bill.

The Do No Harm amendment to the EU (Withdrawal) Bill commits this and future UK and devolved governments, and public authorities, to ensuring that the public’s health and wellbeing continues to be of the highest priority after the UK leaves the EU. This amendment aims to ensure that, as the UK takes back Parliamentary sovereignty, that this and future governments, and public authorities, commit to ‘do no harm’ to our health. This is a cross-party amendment backed by Peers from across the political divide and the health sector.

Read the letter to the editor published on the Guardian, based on a previous letter to party leaders, signed by FSRH's President Dr Asha Kasliwal:

We welcome the government’s recent reassurances that the public’s health will be protected as we leave the European Union. We do not doubt ministers’ sincerity, but they can only speak for this government, not the one after that and nor the one after that. They also offer a view of the future during a period of very significant uncertainty while the government’s Brexit position necessarily shifts and changes as we negotiate with the EU and other countries.

If the government is certain that the public’s health will not be damaged by Brexit then it should have no qualms in supporting the “do no harm” amendment to the EU (withdrawal) bill when it is voted on in the House of Lords on Monday. The amendment provides a clear legal safeguard. It puts beyond doubt that, as we leave the EU, the health of the public will continue to be of paramount importance to this and all future governments. It also means that we won’t roll back on the progress we’ve made in public health since we’ve been a member of the EU. It is this reassurance that the public needs.

Prof John Middleton President, Faculty of Public Health
Dr Chaand Nagpaul British Medical Association council chair
Chris Askew CEO, Diabetes UK
Jeremy Hughes CEO, Alzheimer’s Society
Lynda Thomas CEO, Macmillan
Paul Farmer CEO, Mind
Prof Jane Dacre President, Royal College of Physicians
Niall Dickson Co-Chair, Brexit Health Alliance
Prof Helen Stokes-Lampard President, Royal College of General Practitioners
Alison Cox Director of Cancer Prevention, Cancer Research UK
Sheila Duffy CEO, ASH Scotland
Nicola Close CEO, Association of Directors of Public Health
Sian O’Shea Chairman, British Dietetic Association
Kath Dalmeny CEO, Sustain
Prof Carol Seymour President, Faculty of Forensic and Legal Medicine
Sharon White CEO, School and Public Health Nurses Association
Sarah Hughes Chief executive, Centre for Mental Health
Shirley Cramer CEO, Royal Society of Public Health
Gill Walton CEO, Royal College of Midwives
Prof Alan Boyd President, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine
Anne Godfrey CEO, Chartered Institute of Environmental Health
Nina Renshaw Secretary general, European Public Health Alliance
Prof Tamara Hervey Professor of Law, University of Sheffield
Jeremy Taylor CEO, National Voices
Dr Nigel Hewett Secretary to the Faculty for Homeless and Inclusion Health
Judi Rhys CEO, British Liver Trust
Professor Michael Lavelle-Jones President, Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh
Professor Ash Soni President, Royal Pharmaceutical Society
Dr Liam Brennan President, Royal College of Anaesthetists
Dr Asha Kasliwal President, Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare
Mike Burdon President, Royal College of Ophthalmologists
Dr Nicola Strickland President, Royal College of Radiologists
Prof Russell Viner President, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health
Paul Tuohy CEO, Cycling UK
Katherine Brown CEO, Institute of Alcohol Studies
Dr Kieran Moriarty Alcohol lead, British Society of Gastroenterology
Prof Hazel Inskip President, Society of Social Medicine
Prof David Galloway President, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow
Dr Paul Jackson President, Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine