Section: Health & Housing

Poor housing causing health problems for nearly a third of adults during lockdown

Posted 02.07.20
National Housing Federation: Further reading

Nearly a third of adults in Britain - 15.9 million people - have had mental or physical health problems because of the condition of, or lack of space in, their home during lockdown - according to a new YouGov survey.

This includes people seeking medical help or taking medication for mental health issues, not getting enough sleep, people experiencing depression or stress, as well as those falling physically ill or catching coronavirus.

Five leading housing organisations have now launched a campaign to warn that the country's housing crisis is making lockdown even more unbearable for millions.

The 'Homes at the Heart' campaign is urging government to put funding for new and existing social homes at the heart of the country's recovery from coronavirus.

The lack of space and cramped living conditions has played a big role in causing health problems for these huge numbers of people during lockdown. More than half of those who said their homes weren't big enough said they'd suffered from health problems.

These findings follow a recent review from Public Health England into why BAME people have been worst hit by the pandemic, which found that issues of overcrowding and housing conditions contributed to the increased spread of coronavirus among these communities.

The main cause of these housing problems is the severe lack of housing in Britain, especially social housing. A shortage of homes means growing families have nowhere affordable to move to, leading to overcrowding.

Meanwhile, rent in social homes is typically half the cost of privately rented homes, making them much more affordable for people on low incomes.

On average, social homes are also of a better standard than those rented from private landlords.


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Edited by Mike Skilton

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Reporting on July 2020

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