Health Inequalities

MQT on 2007-05-23
Session date: 
May 23, 2007
Question By: 
Jennette Arnold OBE
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


The London Health Commission's Health in London Report for 2007 reaffirms that overcrowded housing is a key driver of the health inequalities gap. How will you ensure that the appropriate links are made between your Health Inequalities Strategy and your Housing Strategy to address this?


Answer for Health Inequalities

Answer for Health Inequalities

Answered By: 
The Mayor

I was pleased to support publication of the latest Health in London report. I welcome the role of these annual reports in raising awareness of the link between health and a range of key issues including housing. I share your concern about the need to tackle overcrowding which has a disproportionate impact on some minority ethnic and excluded groups, and the significant impact on both short and long term health. The teams leading work on each of these strategies are aware of the importance of ensuring that each strategy actively considers the connections between these two areas of enhanced responsibility for the GLA.

The Housing Strategy will be key to addressing overcrowding issues, both through increasing the supply of affordable housing, with clear targets set for the development of larger homes, and encouraging the development of successful models identified through the £21 million Tackling Overcrowding Pilot funding that I allocated last year.

The Health Inequalities Strategy, which is at an early stage of development, will aim to increase Londoners' access to key determinants of health and much of its focus is likely to be ensuring that other relevant strategies and programmes actively consider and address health inequalities.

In addition to regular liaison between relevant teams as the thinking on each strategy progresses, a range of specific mechanisms are being used to ensure good links between the strategies. For example, this has included consideration of London Health Commission evidence on health and housing and an integrated impact assessment workshop making use of both the evidence and stakeholder expertise to shape the emerging Housing Strategy. Staff will continue to liaise across these policy areas, and I will make sure that the final strategies make the most of my additional responsibilities for both housing and health.