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The well-being of children in the UK$
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Jonathan Bradshaw

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781447325628

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447325628.001.0001

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Housing and the environment for children

Housing and the environment for children

(p.179) Seven Housing and the environment for children
The well-being of children in the UK

Deborah Quilgars

Policy Press

This chapter examines the extent to which children live in poor housing and environments, including experiencing homelessness, in the UK. We do not need research to know that children cannot flourish to their full potential if they live in insecure, cramped, damp or dangerous housing or live in environments characterised by noise, crime and pollution. While robust studies are few, reviews conclude that the cumulative evidence of many, often smaller, studies demonstrates a link between poor housing and poorer children’s well-being, particularly in terms of impacts on health (Shaw, 2004; Quilgars, 2011; Barnes et al, 2013), as well as longer-term poorer outcomes into adulthood (Marsh et al, 1999). There is also evidence that housing circumstances (such as cost, condition and location) can mitigate the effects of poverty (Tunstall et al, 2013). This chapter begins by reviewing the nature of poor housing in the UK before examining the scale of homelessness affecting families and young people. A third section examines the evidence on poor neighbourhoods and children.

Keywords:   poor housing, homelessness, poverty, young people, families, dangerous housing

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