We believe that business has a responsibility to ensure that what they offer doesn’t undermine the public’s health
Do you? Is that what you think? Because I think it should be up to us what we buy and we can "undermine" our health if we damn well please.
And we want to ensure that local authorities have the powers they need in order to curtail those business practices which may undermine the public’s health and the great work that many public health teams are doing.
Eurgh. The totalitarian tendencies of the 'public health' lobby are on full display in this document. There is no aspect of life that they don't want dominated by lectures and harassment. For example...
On a healthy high street businesses would create opportunities for health optimisation. This could include signposting customers to health services, high street employees engaging customers in healthy conversations, health promotions in local shops, such as health shopping trolleys and outreach activities in pubs and bars, including smoking cessation or health checks.
"Engaging customers in healthy conversations"? What does that even mean? As for "outreach activities in pubs and bars", go on, I dare you.
The businesses on a healthy high street would not only enable basic needs, including access to affordable healthy food and affordable financial services, to be met...
"Affordable" thanks to a system of subsidies and price controls, no doubt. And behold, these zealots have made a little graphic listing the good and bad businesses...
Notice how pubs and bars have suddenly become "health promoting". The RSPH say this is because they "encourage social interaction". A more likely reason is that pubs have been so battered by taxes and the smoking ban that the 'public health' lobby no longer sees them as much of a threat and prefers to pretend to be on their side while they go after the off licences and supermarkets.
Notice also how payday lenders and bookmakers have found themselves on the list of unhealthy businesses, despite having nothing to do with health. This gives the game away that 'public health' itself has nothing to do with health, rather it is a classic middle class crusade against temptation and vice.
This is further confirmed by the RSPH's league table of Britain's healthiest and unhealthiest high streets, which have been plastered across the media today. The 'unhealthy' ones are mostly working class cities in the North and Midlands, whereas the 'healthy' ones are mainly nice southern market towns, like Cambridge and Salisbury, plus a few places north of Watford that Hampstead intellectuals occasionally visit, such as York.
Using a ridiculous methodology, they have decided that Preston has the country's least healthy high street and Shrewsbury, of all places, has the healthiest.
The obesity rate is Shrewsbury is 25.9%, well over the national average and considerably higher than the rate in Preston (20.8%). Just saying.
Naturally, all this bollocks is accompanied by demands for state intervention into all sorts of areas that are none of the state's business. These include:
1. Taxing bookies, payday loan shops, tanning salons and fast food outlets at a higher rate than other businesses to "discourage" them from opening.
2. "Introduction of cigarette-style health warnings" for payday loans, fast food and sunbeds. No slippery slope there, then.
3. "We call on the Government to introduce a ban on the positioning of unhealthy food items next to all checkouts and queuing areas."
4. "Ban the positioning of e-cigarettes next to all checkouts" on the basis that "these products contain nicotine, which is a highly addictive, potentially harmful chemical."
Above all, they want councils to be able to close down 'unhealthy' businesses and cap the number of premises run by any one industry at the (totally arbitrary) limit of five per cent.
At a time when high street shops are closing at the rate of 16 a day, the 'public health' lobby are just the people to finish them off. These obsessives must be resisted.