Councillor's concern over high obesity levels in Thurrock
MORE than 39 per cent of ten to 11-year-olds in Thurrock were classed as overweight last year.
Around 25 per cent of those children were actually found to be obese, the highest percentage for that age group in the east of England.
Around 25 per cent of four to five-year-olds in the borough were also classed overweight or obese last year, again, the highest rates in the east of England.
At 28.1 per cent, obesity figures for adults in Thurrock are higher than the national average, which is 24.1 per cent.
The shocking figures were discussed at the latest cabinet meeting.
Conservative councillor Sue MacPherson, the shadow portfolio holder for health and education, asked Labour portfolio holder Barbara Rice how much the council was going to spend tackling the problem.
She said: “I have a very big concern with the figures that have been issued with regards to obesity.
“Obesity in Thurrock is significantly higher than the national average, more worryingly, 25 per cent of children in year six in Thurrock are obese.
“I understand you can’t give figures with regards to what’s going to happen when responsibility for health comes back to the council, however, we can’t leave everything until December, you must have plans.
“How much money is planned, if we get what we’ve asked for, to be put into an obesity project?
“I’m slightly concerned we are saying its one of the priorities, but the figures show nothing has actually happened.”
Cllr Rice replied: “Of course I can’t put figures on this, because we don’t have the figures as I’ve already said.
“Yes indeed we are very, very, concerned, I am concerned as portfolio holder and as a nurse.”