Lauren Ormesher of Lancashire couldn't believe the content of the letter that told her that her 4-year old daughter is overweight. However, the Lancashire mom is not the one to sit back and just watch and so she launched a petition online calling for an end to BMI checks in this way. Mom says calling a healthy child overweight is 'crazy' and she feels upset that how much damage this mere piece of paper can do to the young children.
Mom Lashes Out After Receiving Letter Saying Her 4yo Daughter Is Overweight
Lauren Ormesher, of Skelmersdale, Lancashire is not taking any kind of bullying for her daughter and has begun a campaign to BMI weight checks of children at schools after receiving a letter telling her her four-year-old daughter was overweight.
Lauren shares that her daughter Maggie who does dancing every week and goes to Cobbs Brow Primary School and had recently been crowned the 'petite' Lancashire winner of a national pageant.
Lauren, 32, told LancsLive after raising her voice over the issue she learned that many other parents had gone through the same ordeal.
She said: “We got a letter home saying she’s overweight – I put a post up on Facebook and it turns out a lot of kids all over the country got this letter saying they’re overweight.
"It’s nothing to do with school - a lot of parents had it and had received letters; one was from South Wales and some were from London area and all over the place. Our letter was addressed to the parent or guardian of Maggie, and it said she was overweight according to their test.
"I was quite shocked as she’s a very healthy child and to see the word “overweight“ seemed crazy. Then I felt angry at the damage a letter like this could do to such young children."
The letter received by Lauren was from the Lancashire Healthy Young People and Families' Service, run by HCRG Care Group.
Hitting back at the HCRG Care Group, mom started an online petition calling an end to BMI checks of young children.
She continued: “My concern was that some parents might put their kids on a diet and eating disorders, and all the stress that this entails.
“A lot of people are not happy with the BMI weight checks. There are alternative methods of keeping children healthy rather than weight checking them.
“A lot of parents are getting concerned, especially with Year 6 children who are old enough to understand. One child who’s had a letter is a gymnast; it’s a bit concerning that they are still using that method.
“The end goal is to stop it completely. If they’re going to do health checks it needs reform."
Meanwhile, the health bosses in Lancashire point out that the measure is just one of the services they provide to help to ensure young people maintain a healthy weight.
Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, Lancashire County Council's director of public health, said: "The National Child Measurement Programme is part of the Government's plans to improve young people's wellbeing and gather data relating to their health. We commission HCRG to deliver the programme in Lancashire.
"This is one of the services we provide to support the families of 0 to 19-year-olds, which help to ensure young people maintain a healthy weight and have an active start to life.
"Body Mass Index (BMI) is one of a number of indicators of people's health, but every case is different and we'd encourage any parents with concerns to contact their school nursing teams for help and support."