Social inequalities can lead to health inequalities. Without equal access to resources and support, some young people are put at a disadvantage and their health may suffer as a result. In 2020 the Health Foundation funded a new Inequalities Policy Fellow based at AYPH, who will lead our work in this area over the next few years.
In June 2018 the Health Foundation launched the Young People’s Future Health Inquiry, exploring the building blocks young people need for a healthy future, including a place to call home, secure and rewarding work, and supportive relationships with friends, family and community. AYPH undertook a thorough research programme alongside UCL ICH, analysing evidence and data on young people’s long term health outcomes, which fed into the findings of the inquiry.
A healthy foundation for the future outlined the factors that place 12-24 year olds at risk of ill-health later in life and provides policy recommendations to ensure young people are at the heart of Government decision making. The report found that a fragmented Governmental approach to investment in young people, challenging housing market and insecure employment opportunities are particular risk factors faced by young people today.
AYPH’s inequalities programme will build on the work of the inquiry to place young people at the centre of the policy agenda and amplify their voices. AYPH will lead on understanding inequalities faced by young people from different groups, such as those who are carers, parents, from the LGBTQ+ community, and from black and minority ethnic communities.
The Inequalities Policy Programme will shine a light on health inequalities experienced by young people, bringing together existing evidence and data, raising the profile of the issue and providing a channel for advocacy. The team will draw on the knowledge of experts in the field, aiming to align stakeholders behind common policy calls to improve health outcomes for all young people.
The programme will be linked to the wider work of the Health Foundation, including collaboration with four other policy fellows exploring high quality work, types of work, economic insecurity, and transport options for young people.
For more information, contact Rachael McKeown and sign up to AYPH’s regular newsletter (see ‘Join our mailing list’ below).
We’ve joined 140 other organisations in becoming a member of the Inequalities in Health Alliance (IHA), convened by the Royal College of Physicians. The coalition is campaigning for an urgent reduction in health inequalities, calling for UK Government to:
Our Key Data report highlights the existing health inequalities between young people from wealthy and deprived backgrounds. Through our Health Inequalities Programme, we aim to understand more about young people’s experiences of health inequalities and will work with the alliance to advocate for change.