Nearly all cities struggle with providing good quality and affordable homes for all their citizens. In some it’s become an existential challenge, fundamentally linked to the ability to continue to succeed or even survive. Our cities often have pockets of incredibly luxurious and expensive housing, beyond the reach of even those working in relatively well paid and secure jobs. It is sadly all to frequent that you can observe fellow citizens living in doorways, parks and underpasses in close proximity to these homes for the wealthy. In all measures other than geography they live lives very distant from the urban idyll. The issue of people ending up sleeping on the streets of our cities is to be found world-wide, from Osaka to Sao Paulo, from Auckland to Stockholm. The underlying reasons that lead people to living on the streets are often multi-faceted and can be linked to particular local or regional factors. Health issues, both physical and mental are more common than in the general population. Research from the UK indicates the significant role played by alcohol and drugs. There is a strong correlation in terms of individuals who have experienced some form of significant trauma. We also cannot ignore the impact of national and municipal policies. Across the globe, policies intended to reduce government expenditure have made many millions more vulnerable to becoming homeless.
As I write we are about to enjoy a long weekend, Monday is a public holiday and the weather forecast promises warm weather and sunshine. This will inevitably see many people enjoying a BBQ and a significant amount of alcohol consumed as people have fun with friends and family. It is also certain we will see an increase in alcohol related accidents, violence, and many of us may make another down payment on potential future health problems. Yet alcohol does play a central role in how many of us socialise and, lets be frank, we enjoy it.
In an earlier blog I mentioned that in addition to failings around mental health dual diagnosis there was another subject where lack of action made me angry. In truth on occasion it has also brought me to something approaching despair. The issue in question was Hepatitis C (HCV), a virus I have seen afflict friends and colleagues and let’s not forget the well over 100 million people worldwide living with the infection. It is a major contributor to the rising toll of liver related death.
Вы можете найти такие примеры почти в каждом городе, они бывают разных форм и типов, их популярность ослабевает и исчезает, они могут быть безупречными, уродливыми, преднамеренно неудобными или привлекательными, артистичными и эргономичными с учетом разных популяций и индивидуальных потребностей. Они пересекают мои профессиональные сферы здоровья и политики безопасности сообществ. Их популярность, использование и дизайн говорят нам о городских проблемах и ответах на них. За последние месяцы они привлекли мое большое внимание и достигли нового уровня важности. На этой неделе я буду рассматривать скромную городскую скамью. Я также хотел бы, чтобы вы рассмотрели те, что есть в вашем районе.