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Informal Housing Provision, Health and Inequality

This study is funded by the Russell Sage Foundation. We are interviewing 40 New Haven residents about their experiences providing housing to others who are unable to access or afford their own housing. We seek to understand the impact of such arrangements on the health and wellbeing of those providing housing.

The US is facing an affordable housing crisis that is likely to have severe implications for population health. While the existing literature has focused on how an individual’s housing affects their own health, limited housing availability may also affect health and well-being through the strain that it places on network members who house those locked out of housing opportunities. Little is known about the experiences of these informal housing providers. To address this gap, we draw on the Justice, Housing & Health Study (JustHouHS) cohort of low-income adults to identify and interview informal housing providers. Our aims are to: 1) characterize the experiences of informal housing providers; 2) identify mechanisms that connect the provision of informal housing to health and well-being; 3) explore relationships between informal housing provision and race and gender-based inequalities in housing and health (Principal Investigators: Danya Keene, Co-Principal Investigator: Kim Blankenship).