Luke Pollard

Labour & Co-operative MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport

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Luke backs first aid campaign

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First aid should be taught to all young people in Plymouth.

St John Ambulance have been running a campaign for the past few months to see first aid included as a compulsory subject on the national curriculum. I'm not in favour of politicians meddling in what is taught in our schools but there is a real need to ensure that life saving skills, decent relationship and sex education as well life skills are taught to all our children in the city. That is why I am backing the campaign for first aid to be taught in Plymouth's schools.

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I've just had an email from St John Ambulance saying that they are "delighted that the Labour manifesto committed to the inclusion of first aid on the national curriculum.  We are heartened that whatever happens on 7 May, we are one step closer to creating a nation of life savers."

Andy Burnham, Labour's Shadow Health Secretary said:

By the time they leave school, all young people will have had access to emergency first aid training including Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and the use of defibrillators. Alongside that, Labour will propose a new plan to locate Automated External Defibrillators in major public places - shopping centres, airports, rail stations and sports stadia – and a new national open register of AEDs (available via digital apps) to give people instant information on where to find the nearest AED in an emergency situation.

Decent first aid skills can be the difference between a life saved and a life lost?

In Norway, where first aid education is compulsory, and 95% of the population have been trained in first aid, the survival rates for a heart attack are over 50%. 

According to research by St John Ambulance the majority of teachers (96%) would welcome the introduction of first aid on the national curriculum. 

If you haven't signed up to the St John Ambulance campaign it is well worth having a look on the St John Ambulance website:  thepromise.sja.org.uk.

Let me know what you think about Labour's pledge to teach first aid to all young people in Plymouth's schools.

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