Work, welfare reform and mental health
This programme investigates the impact of welfare reforms implemented in the UK since 2010, and the radically changing forms of work and employment practices on our society’s mental health.
There is growing evidence that the increase in insecure employment - zero-hours contracts and the gig economy - has negative effects on mental health. There is also evidence that welfare reforms over the last decade, in the UK and many other countries, have badly affected mental health for many individuals and families, especially for those who are already living in adversity. There are however other welfare provisions, such as free public transport, and the more generous maternity and paternity leave, that have had beneficial effects on mental health over the medium and long term.
We look to identify the mental health impacts of alternative welfare programmes that could be adopted in the UK and propose recommendations for employment regimes that can support mental health within, and outside, the workplace.