Latest updates

  • London's domestic abuse accommodation scheme extended to November

    July 27, 2020

    The Mayor of London has announced that a scheme providing accommodation to domestic abuse survivors in the capital during Covid will now be extended to mid-November 2020. 

    So far the programme has already given safe refuge to 92 women and 44 children (total of 136) who would otherwise have been trapped in lockdown with a domestic abuser. Of the women supported, 32 have no recourse to public funds. 

     

    Read more

  • Politicians, academics, and public unite in calling for health and wellbeing to be priority of Covid recovery

    July 07, 2020

    A cross-party group of politicians have joined with academics, celebrities, and civil society leaders in urging the government to make public health and wellbeing the priority of the Covid recovery plan.

    In an open-letter [1] MPs from six different parties call on the Chancellor Rishi Sunak to use his Covid recovery speech this week to move the country over to a “health and wellbeing economy where everybody has the basics needed to be able to achieve good health.” 

    Signatories to the letter say that Sunak has a “unique opportunity” to make good on the government’s own commitment to ‘level up’ society and to learn valuable lessons from Covid about the importance of tackling Britain’s systemic levels of inequality and the need to put wellbeing ahead of traditional economic targets.

    They call for a “Covid Legacy Act” - which has been drafted by the cross-party group Compassion in Politics with professor Michael Marmot - which would make it the priority of every government department to meet people’s basic needs while working towards a set of health and wellbeing indicators such as child education, availability of green space, health provision, and adequate income. 

    The letter has been signed by MPs and Peers from across parliament and by academics and public figures including TV presenter Prof Alice Roberts, philosophers Julian Baggini and AC Grayling, former Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams, and the actor Jamie Bamber.  

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  • Event: how do we put health and wellbeing at the heart of the Covid recovery?

    July 06, 2020

    On 30 June 2020 Compassion in Politics hosted a discussion for parliamentarians on why we need to put public health and wellbeing at the centre of the government's Covid recovery plan and how exactly that can be done. 

    We were delighted to be joined for the event by fantastic panellists:

    • Dr Daisy Fancourt, University College, London
    • Lord Layard, LSE
    • Louise Aston, Business in the Community
    • Dawn Austwick OBE, National Lottery Community Fund
    • Prof Michael Marmot, University College, London

    Below you can see clips of each of the speakers as well as a recording of the event in full.

    Read more

  • London opens hotel rooms for domestic abuse survivors

    June 02, 2020

    (Image shown above is not of a hotel used in the scheme)

    Following a campaign by Compassion in Politics and Southall Black Sisters (SBS) the Mayor of London has agreed to open up 82 hotel rooms in London for domestic abuse survivors who would otherwise be trapped indoors with an abuser. 

    Compassion in Politics and SBS had called on the government to make hotel rooms available nationally but their response was to increase funding for domestic abuse charities. The two organisations have argued that this money, while welcome, is not what is needed right now - safe spaces for those who might be trapped indoors with an abuser. 

    Evidence from across the world has shown that domestic abuse rates increase during a lockdown and it was for this reason that the campaign was launched by Compassion in Politics and SBS at the start of the lockdown measures in the UK. 

    While both organisations are disappointed that a national solution has not yet been found, we are both very pleased that 82 rooms are being made available in London. They will continue to campaign together for more regional schemes like London's to be created even as lockdown is gradually lifted. 

    You can read more about the scheme here. Anyone in London who needs to access these rooms should contact the national domestic abuse hotline on 0808 200 0247.

  • How can we build back better? Discussion highlights

    May 23, 2020

    Together with the All Party Parliamentary Groups on Climate Change and Renewable Energy we hosted a panel discussion for parliamentarians looking at how we can build back better after Covid. On the panel was:

    • Sir Michael Marmot, Professor of Epidemiology at University College, London
    • Sir David King, former Chief Scientist to the government and profess at the University of Cambridge
    • Professor Mariana Mazzucato, professor in economics at University College, London
    • Professor Tim Jackson, professor in sustainable development at the University of Surrey

    The discussion was chaired by the Channel 4 news anchor Krishnan Guru-Murthy and covered three main questions: what are the prospects for recovery, is the debt from Covid sustainable, and how do we build a better future?

    Below are the highlights from each of those questions.

    What are the prospects for a healthy recovery?

    • Sir Michael Marmot on how existing inequalities have determined who is most affected by Covid
    • Professor Tim Jackson on the lessons we can learn from the 2008 crash
    • Professor Mariana Mazzucato on why we need to change government approaches to handling crises
    • Sir David King on the predictability of Covid

     

    Is the debt from dealing with Covid sustainable?

    • Professor Mariana Mazzucato on why we shouldn't be talking about numbers but about purpose
    • Professor Tim Jackson on why there are many ways the government can continue to pay for the cost of dealing with the crisis
    • Sir Michael Marmot on what the crisis is teaching us about what we really value

     

    How do we build a healthier, happier society?

    • Sir David King on why the recovery must put climate front and centre
    • Professor Tim Jackson on why we need a much broader definition of "green" jobs
    • Professor Mariana Mazzucato on how governments can use their resources to improve people's lives
    • Sir Michael Marmot on the indicators he would prefer the government used

     

    You can also watch the full video here:

  • Video highlights from our "War to Wellbeing" debate

    May 08, 2020

    Video highlights from our panel discussion with Sir Michael Marmot, Baroness Brown, Professor Carol Propper, George Ferguson CBE, and Dr Ewan McGaughey on how we move from a war-footing to improving public wellbeing.

    Doctors and nurses are held to a very strict code of honesty and transparency. Should our politicians be subject to the same standards?

    Highlights: 

    • Sir Michael Marmot on how we could revolutionise politics overnight with a new cultural standard in politics.
    • Dr Ewan McGaughey on how we can make politicians act honestly.
    • Dr Carol Propper on the problems of lobbying
    • George Ferguson CBE on why he is hopeful positive change can come despite the Covid-19.

    What have we learned from this crisis and how do we avoid returning to business as usual? How will the government afford to make investments in dealing with climate breakdown?

    Highlights:

    • Baroness Brown on the policies that need to be at the centre of the recovery
    • Sir Michael Marmot on why improving health and tackling climate breakdown go hand in hand
    • Dr Ewan McGaughey on the changes we have to make to our financial system
    • George Ferguson CBE on how we can implement a revolution in food production

    How should we be measuring economic “progress”?

    Highlights:

    • Baroness Brown on the need to embed the principle of fairness in the economy
    • Sir Michael Marmot on why we should measure health, not GDP as a marker of success
    • Dr Ewan McGaughey on alternatives to GDP

     

  • Former policy advisers, entrepreneurs, and academics unite in issuing stark warning about Britain’s post-lockdown prosperity

    May 07, 2020