The Citizens’ Jury in Liverpool took place on Wednesday 13th July and Thursday 14th July at the Liverpool Friends Meeting House (the Quaker Meeting House). At this meeting, jury members raised various questions that we weren’t able to answer in full so, as promised, we are responding to these questions on the project website. The questions raised were:

  1. What do people living in more affluent (less deprived) areas think about health inequalities?

There is only a small amount of research exploring this question and some of it is summarised in the review of qualitative research included in your packs. To sum up, this research suggests that people living in more affluent areas have similar views to people living in other areas about what causes health inequalities but they are more likely to place an even greater emphasis on lifestyle behavioural ‘choices’. This article is one of the main pieces of research to compare views of more affluent and more deprived communities.

2. Why don’t we run more health education campaigns and try, for example, to influence children’s diets in schools?

The evidence on health education campaigns suggests that they aren’t effective in reducing health inequalities – in fact, health education campaigns have been found to increase health inequalities because it is the people who are already living in more comfortable circumstances who tend to respond more to these campaigns. This article summarises the evidence.

3. Someone asked a question about the access that people living in deprived areas have to healthy food.

This is a much debated topic in health research with different studies, reaching different conclusions. A recent article in The Guardian argues that urban ‘health food deserts’ exist in the UK.

4. What impact is student debt having on health inequalities?

We haven’t been able to find any research that looked at precisely this question. However, this short report summarises the evidence that is available on the strong links between debt and mental health issues. This conference paper reviews some of the evidence around young people’s views on university fees and student debt.