To promote a healthy and happy environment, communities and individuals as Mayor I will:

  • Implement an Ethical Advertising Policy as part of the council’s planning policies, to apply to bus stops, billboards and advertising spaces in the Hackney.
  • Include in contracts with the Hackney Council’s advertising contractor a ban on advertising on the sites under their control that are potentially harmful to mental or physical health or the environment, such as junk food, gambling, alcohol or high carbon products (including cars, fossil fuel companies and airlines and airports).
  • Adopt a presumption against planning applications for all new digital advertising screens to make new screens harder to install, due to the high electricity use of these technologies.
  • Utilise existing advertising sites in public space for creative community projects engagement and artwork.
  • Write to the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, asking for a ban on such forms of unethical advertising nationally.
  • Write to the Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing and Communities asking for reforms to Planning Guidance on outdoor advertising to take into account the unique problems with energy-intensive digital billboards.

Other local authorities have begun to implement advertising policies against specific products if they consider them to be harmful to the amenity of an area. Even in London the Greater London Authority (GLA), which controls Transport for London (TFL) property, enacted a Healthier Food Advertising Policy in 2018 prohibiting High Fat, Sugar or Salt (HFSS) food advertising on TFL property. Which has been proven to help Londoners make healthier shopping decisions.

A 2021 study found that exposure to Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) car advertising for example can make someone 250% more likely to own an SUV than no vehicle at all. SUVs generally have poorer fuel efficiency and require more resources to manufacture than smaller vehicles, thus contributing more to climate change and environmental degradation. Also their height makes them twice as likely to roll in crashes and twice as likely to kill pedestrians.

Other councils, including Bristol, Norwich and Liverpool, have developed more ethical advertising policies, often spearheaded by Green councillors.

My Policies