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Advantageous inequality or disadvantageous equality? Ethnicity and family support among older people in Britain

Rosalind Willis (Institute of Gerontology, King's College London, UK)

Ethnicity and Inequalities in Health and Social Care

ISSN: 1757-0980

Article publication date: 1 December 2008

Abstract

There is a popular perception that particular ethnic groups have a stronger sense of filial responsibility than is found in Western European societies, which has led to a belief that formal services are not required by minority groups. However, it has been suggested that some minority ethnic older people are actually in greater need of support, because of factors such as poorer health and lower socio‐economic status, than the white majority in Britain. Employing data from the 2005 Home Office Citizenship Survey, ethnic group differences in help given to family members are examined. Contrary to prevailing assumptions, there was only one ethnic group difference; black Caribbean older people had significantly lower odds than white British people of supporting members of their household. Support was equally likely among all other minority groups and the white British group, providing nationally representative evidence for an idea only previously speculated upon.

Keywords

Citation

Willis, R. (2008), "Advantageous inequality or disadvantageous equality? Ethnicity and family support among older people in Britain", Ethnicity and Inequalities in Health and Social Care, Vol. 1 No. 2, pp. 18-23. https://doi.org/10.1108/17570980200800017

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited