Tracey Crouch is first ever Minister for Loneliness, appointed amid rising health concerns in the UK.  Statistics show that one in 10 people in the UK faces isolation, a condition that can lead to depression. According to Crouch, loneliness is “the sad reality of modern life” for “far too many people.”

The announcement of Crouch’s appointment came from Prime Minister Theresa May. “I want to confront this challenge for our society and for all of us to take action to address the loneliness endured by the elderly, by carers, by those who have lost loved ones ― people who have no one to talk to or share their thoughts and experiences with,” May said in a statement.

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Crouch, who also works as a junior minister for sport and civil society, is bringing her varied experiences to the table. She is expected to deliver recommendations from the UK’s Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness, an organization that works to prevent social isolation and loneliness, Reuters reported.

“Jo would be over the moon,” Brendan Cox, Jo Cox’s husband, tweeted.

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Jo started advocating the issue of loneliness in Britain before her death in 2016. The 41-year-old set up the commission shortly before passing on.

According to statistics published in a report by the foundation in 2017, more than 9 million adults in the U.K. face loneliness.

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“There is robust evidence that social isolation and loneliness significantly increase risk for premature mortality and the magnitude of the risks exceeds that of many leading health indicators,” Brigham Young University Psychology Professor Julianne Holt Lunstad is quoted as saying in the Jo Cox Commission’s report. “The challenge we now face is what can be done about it.”

Feature Image Credit: Huffingtonpost.in

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