Online Program

Living with the threat of house demolitions and its adverse psychological impacts: The case of arab-bedouin women in southern Israel

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 12:30 p.m. - 12:45 p.m.

Nihaya Daoud, MPH, PhD, Department of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Shevaa, Israel
Yousef Jabareen, SJD, Department of Education, Tel-Ahi College and University of Haifa University, Nazareth, Israel
Background: Housing is a key social determinant of heath and is a fundamental human right. Land disputes between successive Israeli governments and its Arab-Bedouin indigenous minority have led to hundreds of government-initiated house demolitions each year. Hundreds more residences face on-going threat of demolition which can have adverse mental health outcomes that was not explored. Research Aim: We examined whether on-going threat of house demolition is associated with depression among Bedouin women. Research Methodology: We conducted personal interviews with 464 Bedouin women who visited Maternal and Child Health Clinics in 2008-2009. Threat of house demolition was assessed through a yes/no question: Is your house designated for demolition? Depression was measured by the short form of the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D). We conducted a multivariate analysis to assess the contribution of constant threat of house demolition to depression while considering other variables. Results: Women living in houses under constant threat of demolition had higher depression levels (p<0.001). They tend to live in temporary structures (85%) with a high degree of crowding and no electricity (95%) or water (74%). About 76% of houses designated for demolition were in villages which do not enjoy legal recognition and lack public transportation (69%). Constant threat of house demolition remained significant in the multivariate analysis even after adjustment for SEP and the residence physical features. Conclusions: Constant threat of house demolition is a violation of the basic human right of secure housing and it is linked to higher rates of depression among women.

Learning Areas:

Other professions or practice related to public health
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Public health or related public policy
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the associations between house under constant threat of demolition and depression among Bedouin minority women in Israel.

Keyword(s): Social Justice, Women's Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I was involved in aspects of this study. I have desinged the study, condcuted the data analysis and writing of the results.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.