Mind event explores the links between housing and mental health

The mental health charity Mind hosted a parliamentary event at Westminster to discuss the impact of housing on mental health, based on research they carried out using Understanding Society.

The event involved people with mental health problems, MPs, Mind volunteers and social housing representatives from around the country. The theme of the event was 'Beyond Bricks' and aimed to kick-start discussion in Westminster on ensuring that the rights of people with mental health problems are considered in the housing agenda. The event was based on research carried out by Mind using Understanding Society data to explore the links between housing and mental health.

What did the research show?

The project found that people living in both the social rented sector and private rented sector are significantly more likely to have experience of poor mental health than home owners.

Taking seven years of data from Understanding Society, Mind found that those in the social and private rented sector had a higher risk of mental health problems compared to those who are home owners. People living in the social rented sector had a 4 per cent higher risk of experiencing mental health problems, while those in the private rented sector had a 2 per cent higher risk of having mental health problems.

Paul Farmer, Mind Chief Executive, said, "Decision makers and the social housing sector have a responsibility to make sure that those of us living with mental health problems can access the support we need to recover, stay well and live fulfilling lives. This event provided a valuable opportunity for MPs and housing associations to meet and listen to people’s first-hand experiences of social housing and how it impacts their mental health. Mind is calling for the Government to collect better data on social housing and mental health, and to urgently develop a social housing strategy with mental health at its heart, including protecting and improving existing social housing."

You can read more about Mind's campaign here