Healthy local living is good for individuals and families, the economy and the whole community. We all aspire to it. We all want to avoid sickness. Good health is vital to embracing all that life has to offer. Unfortunately, the diagnosis and treatment of cancer places a significant burden on the community. While not the only health issue of concern, cancer is clearly a major consideration in all communities, and therefore a significant matter for Local Government.
The good news is that about 30 percent of cancers can be prevented through healthier living. Also, people’s ability to cope with cancer and their recovery can be vastly improved when problems of accessing health services are overcome.
While there are many actions that individuals can take to improve their own health and reduce the risk of preventable cancers, Local Government plays a vital role in nurturing a living environment that makes a healthier lifestyle the easier option. Local Government can engineer an environment that makes it easier for people to access services when they need them. Council leadership on these issues complements the role of other government agencies and non-government organisations in providing localised and tailored solutions to the challenges faced by the community.
Councils are responding to community concerns about cancer through their integrated planning framework, as part of their commitment to safe, healthy and sustainable communities. Strategies that reduce the impact of cancer contribute to broader long-term objectives that foster healthy local living.