Meeting the sheltered and extra care housing needs of black and minority ethnic older people

Author(s): Adrian Jones;  

Briefing series: Better Housing Briefing Paper 6

Publisher: Race Equality Foundation

Publication date: March 2008

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Meeting the sheltered and extra care housing needs of black and minority ethnic older people
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Although research into the housing needs of black and minority ethnic elders has made consistent recommendations over the past twenty-four years, these have, at best, been only partly implemented.  With increasing numbers of black and minority ethnic elders, service providers must address their needs, both in the provision of ethnic-specific 'bricks and mortar' sheltered accommodation and 'extra care' accommodation. Given the current emphasis on community cohesion, and a perceived antipathy to solutions that are viewed as addressing the needs of one community alone, consideration should be given to how best to meet specific needs within a mixed environment. This paper argues that there is a clear need for a range of possible solutions to an individual's housing problems, and that awareness of the solutions should be raised to allow service users to  make informed choices.

Key messages:

  • There are increasing numbers of black and minority ethnic elders whose needs must be addressed by service providers
  • Research carried out into the housing-related needs of black and minority ethnic elders has been coming up with consistent findings and making consistent recommendations over the past twenty-four years, which have, at best, been only partly implemented
  • Much of the emphasis to date on meeting the housing and related needs of black and minority ethnic elders has lain in the provision of ethnic-specific 'bricks and mortar', particularly sheltered accommodation. There has, however, been a comparative lack of provision of ethnic-specific 'extra care' accommodation
  • Given the current emphasis on community cohesion, and a perceived antipathy to solutions that are viewed as addressing the needs of one community alone, consideration should be given to how best to meet specific needs within a mixed environment
  • There is a clear need for a range of possible solutions to an individual's housing problems, and for awareness of these solutions to be raised so that people can make an informed choice.

Sections:

  • A growing population
  • Key lessons learned so far
  • Beyond sheltered accommodation
  • Meeting needs in diverse settings: some examples of good practice
  • Housing options