Report shows UK slipping into Victorian-era class divides


(MENAFN) In a sobering analysis released on Sunday, the London-based Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) has reported that COVID-19 lockdowns in the United Kingdom have exacerbated economic challenges, heightened disability rates, and led to a concerning surge in mental health issues among residents. The report points to distressing trends triggered by the lockdowns, including a staggering 700 percent increase in calls to domestic abuse hotlines and a 134 percent spike in school absenteeism. Additionally, the rate of children grappling with mental illness has risen from one in nine to one in six, with almost 25 percent of 17- to 19-year-olds affected.

The CSJ report sheds light on the far-reaching consequences of the lockdowns, indicating that if current trends persist, there could be a 108 percent increase in boys with mental health disorders by 2030 compared to a scenario where lockdowns did not occur. The study emphasizes the need to address the challenges faced by the next generation, expressing concern about the well-being of young people.

According to the report, a bleak future may unfold if measures are not taken to address the ongoing impact of the lockdowns. It suggests that as many as 2.3 million children, representing more than one in four individuals aged 5 to 15, could be diagnosed with mental disorders. The lockdowns, implemented by the government in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, resulted in prolonged school closures, economic downturns, and the furloughing of millions of workers.

Critics argue that the negative effects of the lockdowns far outweighed any benefits, with some describing the approach as "lazy."

University of Edinburgh epidemiologist Mark Woolhouse, quoted in the report, characterized the lockdowns as a strategy that "succeeded only in making a crisis even worse." The findings underscore the urgency of addressing the broader societal implications of pandemic-related restrictions and the need for comprehensive strategies to mitigate the fallout on mental health, economic stability, and social well-being in the United Kingdom.

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