February 19, 2016
Austerity bad for health
An Oxford University professor says austerity programmes create divisions in society and can have a disproportionately negative effect on indigenous peoples.
David Stuckler, a professor of political economy and sociology, has been looking at how fiscal austerity becomes a matter of life and death as social support programmes are cut.
Working age men who lose their jobs are in greater risk of depression, suicide and a range of other health problems, and this becomes worse among traditionally disadvantaged sectors like indigenous minorities.
He says is also a breakdown in social cohesion.
" Austerity measures can exacerbate cleavages between people, creating risk between those seen as deserving and those seen as undeserving, between men and women young and old, different ethnic groups as they fight for a shrinking share of support programmes, he says.
Professor Stuckler is in New Zealand to take part in the University of Otago, Wellington’s public health summer school
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