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Income Inequality As Social Determinants Of Health

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Income Inequality As Social Determinants Of Health Question: Discuss about the Income inequality as social determinants of health.     Answer: Introduction Social determinants of health are the conditions in which people take birth, work, live and age. These situations are shaped by the distribution of power, resources, money at the global and the national levels. Inequities in income and health are one of the biggest social, political and economic challenges of the time (Marmot et al., 2012). Inequities degrade the daily living conditions, wastes human capital and reduce social cohesion. Each of the factors is extremely important for a cohesive, flourishing and secure society. This report deals with the income and the social status to be the determinant of health. The paper also discusses about the community centered initiative taken in Ontario in order to address these social determinants of health and also focuses on my role as an early childhood educator to address this economic and social inequity in the province (Pacquiao, 2016). Income and social status can be considered as one of the biggest determinant of health because of its significance on the overall living condition of people such as food security, opportunities, housing and social recognition in society or community (Ahnquist et al., 2013). There are studies that have linked poor health with poverty (Marmot et al., 2012). The capability of a person to cope up with the stressful condition of low income has a direct effect on the health of a person. Less income often limits the scope of people for opting for different careers and often hampers the scope of higher education. The health impact of low income can be seen in chronic conditions due to the inability to receive long term care (Braveman & Gottlieb, 2014). In order to understand how poverty can impact health it is required to consider the social ladder. People at the top of the ladder have several scopes and resources to make healthy choices. As one moves down the ladder there is a drop in the health choices because of the fewer availability of resources and chances that acts as barriers to proper health (Braveman & Gottlieb, 2014).   Community Based Initiatives In Ontario There are certain benefits that are providing by the service Canada centre. It can help to connect with the correct programs based on one’s financial situation and also provides income support or skills training free of cost. There are tax credit programs and benefits that help out the children, students, women, and people with disability (Braveman & Gottlieb, 2014). The Ontario Disability Support program (ODSP) provides assistance to the people with disability and those who are in need of financial assistance, expenses for pay for living, housing and food.   ODSP offers two types of supports – Income support and employment support (“Ontario Disability Support Program”, 2018).  It will provide financial assistance in receiving the basic needs of life such as housing, food, and clothing. The income support would also involve drugs coverage and optical care for the customer and the family members who are eligible. Several new courses and professional skill development courses are also introduced in order to assist the student with necessary skills suitable for jobs (Ontario Disability Support Program. 2018). The child tax benefit is a monthly payment that is tax free and made to the eligible families for raising children up to 17 years of age or less than that (Prag et al., 2013). The poverty reduction strategy of Ontario aims to create a nation where every individual should get the scope to try his or her own potential to achieve success in life. The local poverty reduction fund of Ontario is a 6 years initiative that has been created aiming to support the innovative and the projects that are community driven (Pacquiao, 2016). The fund is about $50 million that aims to improve the lives of those affected by extreme poverty. This initiative works by providing funds to communities and organizations by creating partnerships. Ontario had already invested over $28.9 million to about 71 projects in more than 40 communities mainly focusing on the employment and the income security among the poverty stricken people, preventing homelessness (Prag et al., 2013). Ontario has launched a new program for helping out the young people to find jobs. The youth job connection is an initiative that would provide support and training to the interested youths. In this initiative the province would invest about $160 million for helping over 27,000 people for getting the skills and the training that they need to make up a better future (“Youth Job Connection (YJC)”, 2018). It would provide pre-employment training and after school work opportunities based on their streams between the ages 15 to 18. This initiative will exclusively focus on the youths who actually face difficulties to access higher education and therefore lag behind in this competitive world. Recommendations As a childhood educator I should take care that the children belonging to the lowest strata of the society gets the proper education under any circumstances. In order to accomplish that, the government needs to be more comprehensive in regulating the rules and the norms. Early childhood development is related to the various social determinant of health. Three critical elements are necessary for a healthy child development; that is stable, nurture care giving, safe and supportive environment to support the growth of a child. Access to proper nutrition, social recognition, proper housing and shelter is all related to the physical and cognitive growth of a child. These things are again dependant on the economic cognition. Hence as a childhood educator I should take care that a child gets access to the resources. Government has introduced several schemes for children, for example the Ontario child benefit that provides direct financial support to the moderate to low income families. The child benefit scheme provides support to about 500,000 families (Prag et al., 2013). As a child educator it should be my duty to keep a note that these facilities are actually accessible to the needy. Conclusion Income and full status can affect all the aspects of a person’s life including their health, education and housing. A plethora of researches have been able to find that individuals having lower income have poorer health. Stable employment plays a significant effect on health providing community connection and more. Low wages can cater to higher stress levels; poorer health affects children susceptibility and affects childhood development. In relation to this the government of Ontario had introduced several community based processes for addressing the determinants of health, such as Ontario disability support program, the youth job connection program for supporting the disabled to lead their life and supporting the youths with trainings for employment. Finally the paper also establishes that it is the role of the childhood educator that should help out the unprivileged child to get access to the resources.   References Ahnquist, J., Wamala, S. P., & Lindstrom, M. (2012). Social determinants of health–a question of social or economic capital? Interaction effects of socioeconomic factors on health outcomes. Social Science & Medicine, 74(6), 930-939. Braveman, P., & Gottlieb, L. (2014). The social determinants of health: it’s time to consider the causes of the causes. Public health reports, 129(1_suppl2), 19-31. Marmot, M., Allen, J., Bell, R., Bloomer, E., & Goldblatt, P. (2012). WHO European review of social determinants of health and the health divide. The Lancet, 380(9846), 1011-1029.  Ontario Disability Support Program. (2018). Retrieved 20 February 2018, from Pacquiao, D. F. (2016). Social Determinants of Health. Global Health Care: Issues and Policies, 159. Präg, P., Mills, M., & Wittek, R. (2013). Income and income inequality as social determinants of health: do social comparisons play a role?. European Sociological Review, 30(2), 218-229. Youth Job Connection (YJC). (2018). Retrieved 20 February 2018, from

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