Tag Archives: child health

Mobile phones: do parents need to turn them off as much as their children?

Today whilst sitting in a local café I saw something vaguely disturbing – which I seem to see almost every day now. This may be rather an unusual subject for a blog, but I just had to sit down and write this piece. A parent had obviously just picked up his daughter from school – she was maybe five or six year’s old – and taken her out for a well-meaning treat. But after five minutes or so, I noticed her just staring out of the window. The father was on his mobile phone for almost the entire length of the time that I was there – at least twenty minutes, if not longer.

The child would intermittently try to get her father’s attention, saying look at this or that, but he would glance across at her with a quick smile and then carry on scrolling – and scrolling, not taking any meaningful interest in what she was saying. They were in my line of sight so I could not escape the whole thing. The little girl was trying so hard to engage with her father, but his attention was elsewhere. In the end I think she just gave up. Maybe he had something very important to sort out, it is not for me to judge, but I have seen this pattern of behaviour repeated many times – especially on train journeys. It is strange how we so often criticise children and adolescents for spending too much time on their phones, when their parents can be at least as culpable. Sometimes there are also safety implications; I have seen the parents of small children using their phones whilst crossing the road, with their young charges walking ahead unsupervised.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 26 Comments

LibLink : Floella Benjamin : Ministers should seize the baton and get serious on child obesity

As noted this morning, Floella Benjamin had an Oral Question in the House of Lords today on the subject of childhood obesity. On a day when Simon Jenkins is suggesting that obesity is a greater threat for millennials than cannabis (add your own comment there, I suggest), the question of the health of our children is a live one.

In a piece for The House Magazine, Floella, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for a Fit and Healthy Childhood, notes;

From day one, we’ve said that if we are to defeat the obesity

Posted in LibLink and News | Also tagged and | 4 Comments
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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarNonconformistradical 5th Aug - 7:04am
    @David Raw "@ Martin Smith Great post, Martin. Good to hear the voice of sanity." Seconded - from a household which includes 1 who got...
  • User AvatarCatherine Jane Crosland 5th Aug - 5:49am
    What a nice idea. The party certainly needs a wise, caring "agony aunt" right now
  • User AvatarPhil Beesley 4th Aug - 11:46pm
    Marco: "I don’t think that’s correct as thanks to a certain progressive political party people don’t pay income tax until they earn at least £12k...
  • User Avatartim rogers 4th Aug - 11:41pm
    Anxious. It is the talk of continuity that has many people alarmed. Do we continue to poll at 6% and accept it? Do we continue...
  • User Avatarbrothertony 4th Aug - 11:08pm
    Hmmm. So many column inches about Party organisation. Constitutional issues r us.
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 4th Aug - 11:00pm
    @ Martin Smith Great post, Martin. Good to hear the voice of sanity.