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Home, sick home: Using the housing experiences of disabled children to suggest a new theoretical framework

Housing Studies

Author: Oldman, C., Beresford, B.
Type: Journal Article
Year: 2000


Using the example of a study of the housing needs of disabled children, the paper suggests a new framework for exploring the links between health, disability and housing. It examines the literature of housing and disability and of health and housing and finds that the former omits health issues and the latter neglects disability. The paper suggests that a key reason why housing, disability and health have not been linked in the past is an unwillingness on the part of the independent living movement to medicalise disability. In the study, however, the adverse effects on physical and mental health of unsuitable housing emerged, quite unprompted, as a central theme. The study's findings can be generalised and go beyond the prevailing account of housing and disability in a number of ways. A new way of thinking about domestic environments and disability may mean that the definition of housing need goes beyond stair lifts and ramps to issues of poverty and health, conflict between families, neighbourhoods, and, most centrally of all, the constraints of physical and social space. The paper concludes that far from challenging the social model of disability the proposed framework supports it.

Further Details

Author Address: Centre for Housing Policy, University of York, York, United Kingdom Social Policy Research Unit, University of York, York, United Kingdom Centre for Housing Policy, University of York, York, YO10 5DD, United Kingdom
Full Title: Housing Studies
Pages: 429-442
Volume: 15
Issue: 3
Accession Number: September, 2011
Electronic Resource Number: 10.1080/02673030050009267
Research Notes: Electronic copy added 24/07/2013
Keywords: disabledchildhousingtheoretical frameworkwhole family impactswell being
Reads: 177