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Charity aims to make London a region of lifesavers

The British Heart Foundation is launching a new campaign to get more people trained in lifesaving cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). It's warning a lack of skills in the capital could cost lives and is urging schools, community griups and businesses to offer training,

British Heart Foundation launches new CPR campaign Credit: Tim Goode/EMPICS Entertainment

The report found that in London:

· 73% of people would not feel confident performing CPR on a family member or loved one6

· 48% would be deterred by the 'fear of causing more harm than good'

· 82% of people would not be confident performing CPR on a stranger

· 56% admit that most people in Britain would look for someone else to take the lead if they were to witness a medical emergency

BHF wants CPR to be mandatory part of school curriculum Credit: PA

The charity says that in countries where CPR is taught to all young people at school, survival rates are as high as 25%. If this was achieved in the UK it could save around 5,000 additional lives a year.

Simon Gillespie, BHF Chief Executive, said: "Too many lives are lost needlessly because people don't have the basic CPR skills to act in life-threatening situations.

"These figures show how crucial it is that people are taught CPR so they know how to respond if they witness someone suffering a cardiac arrest. The 'Call. Push. Rescue' message is simple to remember and by spreading this far and wide we're determined to radically improve the country's shocking survival rates.

London councils worst in England for turning homeless people away

London councils are the worst in England for turning homeless people away- according to an undercover investigation by homelessness charity Crisis. Using people with personal experience of homelessness to test the services, it found that 80 per cent of them got no or little help at all.

A homeless man sleeps beside a shop window in central London Credit: Laura Lean/PA Wire

City wide, this is likely to mean thousands of people turned away without help. Official figures show that rough sleeping in the capital has risen sharply compared to the rest of the country, more than doubling in the last six years

In response to the report's findings, Crisis is launching a campaign - No One Turned Away - calling for action from the three main political parties so that all homeless people can get the help they need.

Jon Sparkes, Chief Executive of Crisis, said: "Life on the streets is devastating and no one should have to go through it. Yet even in the 21st century, homeless people who ask their council for help are being turned away to sleep on the streets - cold, desperate and forgotten. This is nothing short of a scandal. On top of the human cost, it is incredibly expensive for society, which has to pick up the pieces.

He added: "Our findings paint a grim picture of homelessness services in the capital. While London councils are under enormous pressure from welfare reforms and budget cuts, many are failing to meet even their most basic legal duties. Homeless people are being turned away without so much as an assessment of their needs.

"Everyone deserves a second chance, yet too often the door is slammed in people's faces, leaving them with nowhere else to turn."

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Former Olympics minister backs London smoking ban

Former Olympics minister Dame Tessa Jowell today called on Boris Johnson to introduce a smoking ban in London's parks.

Boris Johnson and Dame Tessa Jowell Credit: PA

Dame Tessa is regarded as a potential Labour candidate for City Hall in 2016.

A new report has urged to make parks and open spaces like Trafalgar Square smoke-free zones.

But Johnson appeared hesitant, saying there needed to be clear evidence it would save lives.

The Mayor must adopt Lord Darzi’s proposals for smoke free parks in full. We need to make the healthier choice the easier choice for Londoners. The Mayor has a proposal sitting at his feet which could mark the start of a serious public health crusade in the next decade in London.

As Lord Darzi’s report states, every week two classrooms of London children take up smoking. Every year, 8,400 Londoners die from smoking – the number one cause of preventable deaths in our capital city. He must seize this opportunity to build a coalition of support across our city to tackle London's shocking health inequalities.

It is also crucial that the Mayor accelerates his plans to improve air quality, every year over 4,000 Londoners die prematurely due to poor air pollution. He has less than two years left as Mayor, but it is not too late for him to leave a legacy of public health improvement for our great city.

– Dame Tessa Jowell

Your views: Should smoking be banned in public places?

Boris Johnson is under pressure to ban smoking in ALL London parks. Smoke free zones could also be created at landmark open spaces like Trafalgar Square.

Would you back a ban? Is this a fair way to try and improve public health? Or would it be a step too far and an infringement of your civil liberties? Let us know.

Join the debate on our Facebook page

Tanja Günther Ridiculous! As a smoker, I'm more than okay not to smoke in a pub etc and at a station, but banning it from open spaces?!?! Ridiculous!

Jill Franks I'm a non smoker but this is just stupid!!!! Leave people that smoke alone, it's their choice! Ban smoking.... Make it illegal but I tell you one thing..... Without the tax people pay on the fags the NHS really will crumble!!

Li Li Lou Stevens Turning in to a nanny state cant beleave how ridiculous this country is now.

Andrew Jarman Ideally cigarettes (and cigars, etc) should be phased out altogether. They contribute nothing to society apart from causing cancer and smoking related heart diseases. As a minimum tobacco companies should be prohibited from adding anything that increases the addictiveness of smoking and pricing points made to such a level that it naturally dies out. Bans don't work that just makes it attractive to criminal gangs much as it has done with cocaine and heroin.

Josephine Boorman Ridiculous! as a non-smoker I believe that it's not going to hurt me at all if someone smokes a cigarette outside! provided they're not actually blowing the smoke in my face of course.Too much nanny state in not a good thing.Smokers have rights too you know!

Gaz Diggens As a non smoker, I do think that this idea is madness.People who want to smoke in a park, should do.When I have been in a park & people are smoking it has never bothered me. PC gone nuts.

Lord Darzi formally unveils plans today to make London the healthiest major city in the world

Former health minister and pioneering surgeon Lord Darzi will unveil some radical smoke-free plans for London later today- as part of a drive to make the capital the healthiest major city in the world.

Professor Lord Ara Darzi at the launch of the London Health Commission Credit: PA

He wants to make London's parks as well as Trafalgar Square no-smoking areas- as well as implement measures to combat the threats caused by obesity, lack of exercise and pollution.

Smoke-free proposals for London park and public places Credit: PA

He'll be presenting the final report of the London Health Commission to London Mayor Boris Johnson today.

Lord Darzi says "Each year, more and more Londoners are choosing to quit smoking, improving and lengthening their lives. We need to help more Londoners to do the same. After all, smoking is still the leading cause of avoidable deaths - every year, more than 8,000 Londoners die prematurely from tobacco.

He added:

"As a cancer surgeon working in the NHS, I see the terrible consequences for smokers and their families. We must do more to help people quit and discourage kids from taking it up. The 2007 legislation tackled passive smoking. We now need to do more to help smokers to kick the habit"

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