Top charities join forces to launch Every Child a
A new campaign has been launched to make first aid compulsory
in all state-funded secondary schools
St John Ambulance, the British Heart Foundation, and the British
Red Cross have joined forces to launch
Every Child a Lifesaver, a campaign to make first aid
compulsory in all state-funded secondary schools. Too many people
die needlessly where simple first aid could have saved them, but if
every child had the opportunity to learn these skills before
leaving school, some of those lives could be saved.
On 20 November, the Emergency First Aid Bill will have its
second reading in Parliament and it’s our best chance of making
first aid compulsory before the next General Election in 2020.
Members of the public are being urged to
to call on their MP to vote in support of first aid in
Why are we doing this?
There are tens of thousands of medical emergencies every year in
the UK, resulting in deaths, injuries and disabilities. Every year,
over 30,000 cardiac arrests happen outside of hospital – the vast
majority (80%) of them in the home, yet currently, less than one in
ten survive. 250,000 people suffer a burn injury each year, with
175,000 of these attending A&E. Few families have not been
touched by a medical emergency involving a loved one, yet too many
of us would not know how to help them.
What is emergency first aid?
The Bill, tabled by Teresa Pearce MP, will require secondary
schools to give young people the skills and confidence to deal with
a range of medical emergencies including cardiac arrests, heart
attacks, choking, bleeding, asthma attacks, and seizures.
Importantly, emergency first aid education ensures that pupils know
to seek help and support when needed, including from the emergency
The Bill also recognises the emotional needs of people that step
in to help in a medical emergency - it prepares young people to
deal with situations where their interventions may not have saved a
Skills to save a life
Sue Killen, CEO at St John Ambulance, said: ‘Nothing is more
important to us than young people learning the skills to save a
life. We urge everyone to go to everychildalifesaver.org/action so
MPs see that this campaign has backing in every community. Without
your support, we can't make this happen; but with your support, we
could achieve something brilliant: Every Child a Lifesaver.’
The campaign was launched in Parliament on 16 September and the
charities hope that people will call on their MPs to support the
bill’s second reading on 20 November.
Ask your MP to vote for first aid in schools