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U.K. Kids Spend Less Time Outside Than Prison Inmates, Study Says

Mar 25, 2016
TIME Health
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Kids in the United Kingdom are spending less time outside than prisoners, according to a new study.

A survey of 2,000 parents in United Kingdom finds that nearly three quarters of children are spending less than one hour outside every day, the Guardian reports. About 20% are not going outside at all on a regular basis. U.N. guidelines mandate that prisoners receive “at least one hour of suitable exercise in the open air daily.”

“The truth is we are enclosing our children,” Mark Sears, an advocate for "wild play," told the paper. “We are stifling their ability to be free, to be at their best as children and it is having significant impacts.”

Though the survey was commissioned by the laundry detergent brand Persil as a part of its "Dirt is Good" campaign, it aligns with goals laid out by government officials in the U.K. The environment secretary announced an effort to get every child to visit a national park on Wednesday, according to the Guardian.

In the U.S., First Lady Michelle Obama has been a fierce advocate for getting children outside for play time as a part of her "Let's Move" initiative.

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