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The fatal burden of inequality: why are certain groups more affected in this pandemic, and what to do about it?

11 Dec
law-202021-tli-pandemicsinequality
The fatal burden of inequality
Part of Pandemics and Inequality: the ethical, legal and policy challenges of tackling COVID-19 in an unequal world

The event will be hosted virtually via Microsoft Teams. Please register to receive the joining link.

Event Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic has served both to expose and exacerbate already longstanding inequalities. The risks of infection, severe disease and death are not equally distributed in the population – rather, a very familiar pattern is emerging whereby different forms of socioeconomic disadvantage – e.g. overcrowded housing, precarious employment, poverty, worse access to health care – put some population groups at significantly higher risk of disease and death in the pandemic. Some of the hardships affecting the poor can be mitigated through policies such as furlough schemes, income support and other forms of social safety nets. However, different countries differ in their ability and willingness to implement such policies.

This session is dedicated to examining how underlying socioeconomic inequalities have played out in the pandemic to compound social disadvantage. What could have been done differently to mitigate the increased risk and hardships of disadvantaged groups? Was this unequal impact an inevitable consequence of deep structural inequalities?  

Event Speakers

Professor James Nazroo joined Sociology at the University of Manchester in October 2006 and took up the position of Director of the Cathy Marsh Centre for Census and Survey Research in April 2010. Before coming to Manchester, he was a Research Fellow in the Department of Social Policy and Social Sciences at Royal Holloway - where he worked primarily on gender inequalities in mental health, and also on marital violence , and a Research Fellow/Senior Research Fellow at the Policy Studies Institute - where he worked primarily on ethnic inequalities in health . More recently he was a Senior Lecturer, Reader and then Professor of Medical Sociology in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at UCL - where he was head of the Health and Social Surveys Research Group and continued his research on ethnic inequalities in health, alongside a growing body of research on ageing. He also holds an honorary position at UCL.

Dr Tim Elwell-Sutton is Assistant Director of Strategic Partnerships at The Health Foundation. Before joining the Health Foundation, Tim worked as Assistant Director and Consultant in Public Health in Thurrock Council where he commissioned a range of health improvement services and worked to strengthen prevention in children’s social care. He has worked to improve the public's health in a range of public sector organisations in the UK including local authorities, Public Health England, and the Department for International Development. He also has experience of working with charities in Hong Kong and Nepal, where he worked on infectious disease control programmes.


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