Mayors from across Europe sign declaration for Health at London Conference

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The Mayors of London, Frankfurt and Dublin, and representatives of the Mayors of Amsterdam and Madrid, today signed a Declaration for Health at an international conference hosted by The King's Fund and Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London.

The Declaration is an agreement to work to improve health in each city through co-operation and partnership. It states that improving health should be a fundamental goal of city government, to be achieved through strategic planning for transport, the economy, urban regeneration and environmental improvement.

In a keynote address to the conference, Mayor of London Ken Livingstone said:

'I believe that the potential for urban political authorities to influence the health of their populations – whether for good or ill - is immense. Our best hope for improving life expectancy in London lies in improving the life chances of the people who live here.

'I am delighted to sign up to the Declaration for Healthy Cities. London has failed a large part of its population over the last 25 years, and I am determined to make use of all the powers at my disposal, working with central government, employers, trade unions and all stakeholders to begin the long task of redressing this.'

Chairing the conference, The King's Fund chief executive Rabbi Julia Neuberger said:

'Cities can be great places to live. But for many citizens they are associated with poverty, isolation, pollution and fear. City governments, by working together with all of those responsible for health in their cities, can do a great deal to tackle the root causes of avoidable illness.

'By bringing together Mayors from across Europe, this conference will help cities to share their experiences and work together across national boundaries to improve the health of their citizens.'

Notes to editors

The Mayor of London launched 'The London Health Commission – One Year On', a report about the achievements of London's independent health commission in its first year, at today's conference. A full copy of the report can be obtained from the London Health Commission by contacting Gus Wilson on 020 7983 4120.

The conference, City Renewal and Health, will be held at the Commonwealth Institute, London W8, on Thursday 6 December and Friday 7 December.

The mayoral panel will consist of:

Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London
Michael Mulcahy, Mayor of Dublin
Petra Roth, Mayor of Frankfurt
Simon Vinals, Health Mayor of Madrid City Council
Bea Irik, Alderman of Amsterdam

The conference is organised by the King's Fund and the Greater London Authority, and supported by the London Development Agency, the Corporation of London and the NHS Regional Office for London. It includes a special dinner for the mayors and their representatives, hosted by the Lord Mayor of London, at Mansion House.

For more details about the conference, copies of the Declaration, or to book interviews please contact: 

  • Daniel Reynolds, King's Fund public affairs office, on 020 7307 2581, or Andy Bell on 020 7307 2585 or 07831 554931. 
  • Clare Furniss or Catherine Bithell, Greater London Authority press office, on 020 7983 4716. 
  • Andrew McKie, Corporation of London press office, 020 7332 1754.

There will be a press room on site for the duration of the conference, including full media facilities. The telephone number for the room will be 020 7371 6883 or 020 7603 4535 Extn 255.