Translating research into policy and practice

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Ben Jessup, Policy Adviser at the Sport and Recreation Alliance, reflects on how we’re turning research into practice with the #RightToBeActive petition and campaign.

When the Alliance launched our Why have we failed our children? research back in July, we didn’t want to re-invent the wheel, nor pretend that we have all the answers.

We highlighted one primary recommendation: We must establish the fundamental right of a child to be active.

This research was the first step in our journey towards establishing this fundamental right and our next step had to be turning this recommendation into very specific, tangible action.

We have now launched a petition which sits at the heart of the #RightToBeActive campaign, and we will be asking you, your family, friends and colleagues, to support our four calls to government:

  • Establish a new statutory duty on local authorities to provide all children with the opportunity to be active;
  • Coordinate and promote physical activity across all local services including health, education, early years and children’s services;
  • Introduce new legislation to make it a requirement for government ministers and public bodies to put the United Nations Rights of the Child at the heart front and centre of decision making and to be accountable publicly for achieving this.
  • Create a long-term, child-focussed strategy to transform the physical and mental wellbeing of our children through physical activity.

We are just beginning to scratch the surface of the inactivity crisis, and we ask that you join us, and organisations across the sector, in getting behind this campaign.

We are determined to ask the difficult questions necessary to create meaningful, long-term change and must all take urgent action now to make sure that we don't continue to fail our children.

Show your support for #RightToBeActive online and sign the petition here.

You can find more about the Alliance’s research Why have we failed our children? here.