Blogs

Regular updates from our Digital Content Creator, Sam Cleal

 

16 February 2017

Getting To Know Tamara Sandoul

Tamara

As things continue to change at CIEH, we welcome a new recruit to the team. Let’s get to know her a little bit more. Meet Tamara. She’s a Policy Manager here at CIEH, looking after housing and air quality as well as keeping an eye on developments in health and safety. 

What is your background? 

“I’m a Philosophy, Politics and Economics graduate from Warwick University. I have a background in health policy, having worked for the Department of Health, British Lung Foundation and Breast Cancer Now.” 

 What is your relationship to environmental health?  

“I’ve previously worked on public health issues and also on air quality. At the British Lung Foundation, our team led on the campaign to ban smoking in cars carrying children and supported the introduction of standardised packaging for tobacco products.” 

 Is air quality the biggest environmental health issue facing the UK right now? 

“Concerns about air pollution have been growing in recent years. 37 out of 43 areas in the UK are still breaching EU limits on air pollution. This has not yet been properly addressed by the Government and it is nearly impossible for people to avoid being exposed to pollution in urban areas. However, there are many other environmental health concerns, which may be more hidden but pose an equally big threat to public health, such as poor housing conditions.” 

If you were Mayor of London, what would be your first policy? 

“I would look more closely at the private rented sector to see whether conditions could be improved for tenants, perhaps as part of the extra powers for devolution of the capital. I would also look at tackling air pollution by taking older and more polluting vehicles off the road and protecting schools in the worst affected areas.” 

When she’s not working, one of Tamara’s passions is making ceramics. 

“I tried my hand at it years ago and have been completely hooked ever since! This is the one hobby that has stuck with me and will continue to be a part of my life for years to come.” Her favourite place to visit is Rome: “It’s a fantastic city to visit – lots to see, lots of amazing food and lots of sunshine.” 

What are you looking forward to getting stuck into at the CIEH? 

“I look forward to meeting all of our stakeholders and setting up expert panels and communities for each of our policy areas, so that our members can get more involved in our policy work going forward. I would also like to make the work of environmental health officers better understood outside of the profession, so that the general public is more aware of the great work being done across the country to protect the nation’s health.” 

To find out more about Tamara's work, take a look at our policy pages. 

    

9 February 2017

A Jersey Expedition 

 
Jersey
 
Last month, our Chief Executive, Anne Godfrey, along with our president, Tim Everett, spent two days in the Bailiwick of Jersey. 
 
The visit aimed to unite the CIEH with current and past members of the Environmental Health team out there. Whilst we revealed our plans for the CIEH this year, Tim and Anne were able to find out just how Jersey carries out the Environmental Health function. Being well aware that Jersey is a self-governing parliamentary democracy outside of the UK and the European Union – and so it may write its own legislation – both visitors were eager to see how this independence from UK law has allowed the island to develop an agility and robustness in its Environmental Health law-making. 
 
Senior managers from the Environment Ministry and several retired CIEH members spent time with Tim and Anne, who both received presentations on the Environmental Health function in Jersey, Environmental Policy, Public Health Policy and Housing Policy. These were given by senior officials from 3 different Ministries and including the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Jersey. 
 
Tim and Anne also met with The Minister for the Environment, whose responsibilities include Environmental Health, as well as a whole host of other senior Jersey politicians. Next, a trip to the newly refurbished desalination plant provided some light relief from a very busy schedule. 
 
Lastly, the newest member of the environmental Health team in Jersey, Felicity Guest, was presented with her EHRB certificate by Tim. Felicity is the first Jersey-born Environmental Health Officer to join the team for some time. 
 
On behalf of Tim and Anne, we’d like to thank Jersey’s Environmental Health team for their hospitality and generousness. 
 
 
▼ January blog posts 

Diesel: The Not So Silent Killer

19 January 2017

Car
 
There was a lot of buzz at last night's air quality event about diesel. As experts gathered in CIEH headquarters for a panel event organised by London Sustainability Exchange (LSX), we learned that the biggest cause of bad air by far is diesel emissions.
 
Diesel contributes significantly to the toxic mix of gases and particles we breathe in daily. ‘The government did well enough in incentivising us to buy diesel cars, the same effort should be made to get transport infrastructure changed, updated and futureproofed’ said LSX event organiser Hannah Gardiner. 
 
She was not alone. The evening opened up with speeches from 4 guest speakers, which continued into a panel discussion with Q&A and finally a debate. What was clear was just how passionate everybody was about improving air quality. 
  
Under review was the recent guidance published by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). ‘Nice as far as it goes’, said Dr Tim Chatterton of UWE Bristol, ‘but it doesn’t address the real issues’. Real issues like the fact that 9,500 people die per year in London alone due health complications arising from bad air. 
 

On hand to spell out the worst case scenario for Londoners was Professor Jonathan Grigg of Queen Mary University. A paediatric expert, Grigg spoke about lung growth and advised that national interventions were necessary to prevent young people developing conditions such as wheeze and asthma.

Speaking about the Mayor’s position, Oliver Lord of Greater London Authority admitted that encouraging diesel vehicles has led to a poorer quality of air, which is now being curtailed by initiatives such as the congestion charge and vehicle excise duty. He further commented that it was an issue of awareness and education: ‘it is key to understand diesel emissions and the impact they’re having in the real world, as well as the options people have to phase out diesel.’

If this is an issue you’re affected by, you can read more about the LSX event in our next issue of EHN Magazine. Also visit our YouTube channel where you can watch footage from the event.

 

New Year, New Us: The First Ever CIEH Blog Post

16 January, 2017

First blog
 

Welcome to the CIEH blog, a brand new resource that chronicles developments from inside CIEH, informs you about all of our events and campaigns, and shares stories from around the globe relating to environmental health.

We’d like to welcome you to the blog by relaying to you some of the changes that are happening here, and informing you of the myriad events we have going on this month and the next.

It’s an exciting time with our panel on air quality having just closed; we’d like to thank everybody for their feedback on this important issue. We’re also still in the midst of our renewals season. You can now renew online or by direct debit to save up to £31 on your renewal fee! Offer ends 31st January.

Celebrating over a year at the helm, our CEO Anne Godfrey continues to champion change, promising to serve our members but also to reinvigorate the organisation even more so this year.

We’re looking forward to a great selection of conferences in 2017, starting with our Smoking Conference in April and our Annual Housing and Health Conference in May. We’ve also got several interactive workshops for January (more details below) including how to deal with ‘Damp, Mould and Excess Cold’, ‘Tackling Rogue Landlords’ and a ‘Noise Management Update’. Read here for information and a take a look below for a full of list of our events throughout January and February.

Be sure to like our revamped Facebook page and keep up with us over on Twitter. There’s so much more on the way, so stay tuned in to CIEH this winter for blogs, webinars, events, videos and more!

January 

17th - Understanding HHSRS 
18th - HMO practical inspection 
19th - Preparing cases under the new sentencing guidelines 
25th - Managing H&S in hotel and leisure clubs 
25th - Damp, mould and excess cold 

February 

1st - Managing the risk of legionella 
1st - Applying HHSRS 
2nd - Understanding HHSRS 
7th - Tackling rogue landlords 
8th - Preparing cases under the new sentencing guidelines 
22nd - Managing H&S in hotel and leisure clubs 
28th - Noise management update 

 

 




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