Rallying the Masses: BDA and the Trade Union Movement
  • The British Dietetic Association (BDA) made itself heard loud and proud at this year’s Annual Trades Union Congress (TUC) by tabling a motion around workplace health.  To complement the motion, the BDA is also took the opportunity to launch its brand new workplace health initiative, The BDA Work Ready Programme, at TUC.
    The 147th TUC was held in Brighton (13 September to 16 September). Each affiliated union can send delegates to Congress.  At Congress 'motions' (resolutions for debate) are debated and, if accepted, form the basis of the TUC's work for the next year.
    The BDA motion, Union Movement Working Together on Workplace Health, called on delegates to recognise the importance of entrenching a healthy workforce to help make a positive difference to millions of UK workers.  Importantly, the motion also called on delegates to recognise the important role dietitians have in influencing workplace health at all levels.  The BDA was unanimously supported.
    The BDA Work Ready Programme which was launched at TUC involved an in-depth white paper entitled Work Ready Programme: Supporting healthier working lives through dietitian-led wellness initiatives”.  The paper identifies how good nutrition and hydration, alongside being active, keeps the UK workforce healthy and how initiatives can be integrated into places of work that have a positive ethos of health promotion. 

    To complement The BDA Work Ready Programme, and associated white paper, later this year, the BDA will roll out an accredited programme and framework that will enable dietitians around the UK to work with employers to bring about positive health benefits for their wider workforces.
    Speaking about the BDA workplace health motion at TUC, BDA Chairman, Dr Fiona McCullough, said, “UK workers spend a significant amount of time in the workplace, yet so little has been addressed to ensure we encourage and promote healthier living while at work.  In addition, one in six working people live with a long term condition, such as diabetes, heart disease, respiratory disease, or a disability, and we know that eating and living well can help support these and all workers to build and maintain healthier lives.
    I am extremely passionate to fly the flag for workplace health during my time in office as British Dietetic Association Chairman and am pleased we are tabling this motion at TUC and look forward to them taking up this cause in the coming year with key decision makers around the UK.” 

    For more information on the BDA Work Ready Programme, please go to www.BDAWorkReady.co.uk.