Hot Topic - Fellows Discuss the Relationship Between Gentrification and Health

Search

Loading...

News

Latest News

Oct 14, 2018
by Anna Rawe
Newsletter
Register for our Newsletter and stay up to date
Register now
Hot Topic - Fellows Discuss the Relationship Between Gentrification and Health

Salzburg Global Fellows discuss the relationship between gentrification and health Salzburg Global Fellows discuss the relationship between gentrification and health

 A select number of Fellows at Building Healthy, Equitable Communities: The Role of Inclusive Urban Development and Investment were asked: What is the relationship between gentrification and health? We have published their answers below.

“First of all, it depends on how you define gentrification. If that is rich people moving into formerly disadvantaged communities, it may lift up whoever is left there in the gentrification. We did research many years ago where we planned community development programs to lift up a very disadvantaged community, and then all of a sudden the local council decided to facilitate gentrification. What we found was that people moving in increases inequity. But, if the gentrification of services enables the people who live there to lead better lives and have higher housing quality then actually there’s nothing wrong with gentrification. If it means moving people from high socio-economic status into areas that were formerly lower socio-economic status and pushing those people out, the health effects may be quite detrimental.”

Evelyne de Leeuw, Netherlands
Professor at the Centre for Primary Health Care and Equity Training Research and Evaluation

“Gentrification is unhealthy… usually it happens because people are put outside of their local neighborhood where they live, and I think there is an intrinsic relationship between human beings and where they live. If they are put aside for some external reason, this is not good for health at all, mental, respiratory, cardio vascular health, and quality of life.”

Waleska Caiaffa, Brazil
Professor of epidemiology and public and urban health at the Federal University of Minas Gerais, School of Medicine, Belo Horizonte City

“My dad grew up [in Berlin], and it has changed 180 degrees. It used to be an area where people would [squat] but more also for political and left-wing reasons, and it used to be like that for a long time, and then after the reunification and the wall came down it took another 15 years, and everything turned around... Now it’s a place where people who are not originally from Berlin start their families there but with much higher incomes and we have people that are thrown out. I mean there is a tenant law, but it doesn’t work... I think gentrification will tear apart communities, and I’ve heard it here [for] the first time that the social [aspect of the] community really contributes to people health… The unmixing of neighborhoods... not only pick[s] apart what is there now, but already the neighborhoods are separated by having workplaces here, and living places there and I think a mix would be more healthy...”

Judit Kockat, Germany
Project manager for the Buildings Performance Institute Europe (BPIE)

“[Gentrification] centers around two things, typically one is displacement, and the other is [the] loss of control for people who are not displaced... We [also] know that for people who don’t get displaced but stay in neighborhoods, it can have some positive impacts I think. Sometimes gentrification brings along with it new resources, amenities, and services in neighborhoods. But, new residents don’t always have access to those, and they don’t always feel comfortable using those because they may not feel like those are for them. You also have a loss of power... when you introduce people who are more privileged into that neighborhood, suddenly... [they] have less of a say in what happens in their own neighborhood than they used to... at a city level when you’re seeing so much urban investment and change, it just sends the message that now cities are for those people who can afford it. That’s devastating for new generations of people who feel they can’t access all the things the city has to provide...”

John Vick, USA
Evaluation and assessment director for the Tennessee Department of Health’s Office of Primary Prevention


The program Building Healthy, Equitable Communities: The Role of Inclusive Urban Development and Investment is part of Salzburg Global Seminar's multi-year series Health and Health Care Innovation. This year's program is held in partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Keep up to date with the conversations taking place during the program. Follow #SGShealth on Twitter and Instagram.

 

 

 

<style media="print" type="text/css">#s3gt_translate_tooltip_mini { display: none !important; } </style>