Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Kids – get your parents active

This Sunday, children should get their parents out of the house for a game of backyard cricket or a kick of the football for Active Australia Day Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Larry Anthony, said today.

“This year’s Active Australia Day campaign will focus on encouraging people who have given up sport to have another go. Parents should dust off their old cricket bat or hockey stick and show their children how to play a sport they used to play.

“More than 40 per cent of Australian children play no sport and do not participate in other physical activity.

“We know that many children are filling up on high fat, high sugar food and drinks. They are also spending more time in front of the television and playing on the computer than ever before.

“As a result, approximately 20 per cent or one million Australian children are estimated to be overweight or obese. These rates have continued to rise and Australia now has one of the highest rates of childhood obesity amongst developed nations.

“Our children need to spend less time in front of the Playstation and more time in the playground.

“The Government has developed Healthy Kids Australia newsletter to give families the latest information and advice on keeping their children healthy and active through a balanced diet and regular exercise. The newsletter has been a great success and we will soon distribute the second edition.

“However, it is not only children we need to worry about when it comes to weight. Levels of obesity are also increasing for adults. All Australians need to watch their weight, fitness and health to ensure they can get the most out of their lives.

“On Active Australia Day, I encourage kids to take the lead and get mum and dad outside for some exercise. It doesn’t need to cost parents anything and it is a great way to spend time with their children on a Sunday afternoon,” Mr Anthony said.