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    ‘Press-ganged’ Generation Rent: youth homelessness, precarity and poverty in East London

    Watt, Paul (2020) ‘Press-ganged’ Generation Rent: youth homelessness, precarity and poverty in East London. People, Place and Policy 14 (2), pp. 128-141. ISSN 1753-8041.

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    This paper examines youth homelessness, precarity and poverty via a critical account of ‘Generation Rent’ – that young people are living in the private rental sector (PRS) in perpetuity having been locked out of both homeownership and social renting. The paper examines precarity in relation to employment (non-standard contracts) and housing (insecurity and evictions) with reference to in-depth interviews undertaken with 55 young people aged 18-30. This multi-ethnic group of low-income youth were living in temporary accommodation either in East London or in South East England having been displaced there from London. The paper illustrates the interlinkages between employment and housing precarity. The young people experienced the ‘low-pay, no-pay cycle’ which contributed towards making the expensive London PRS an insecure and unrealistic housing ‘option’. Their preferred housing was social renting, but access to this diminished due to austerity-related welfare cutbacks. Despite the young people’s well-founded antipathy towards the PRS, they were increasingly being steered towards this tenure destination by housing officials – a case of coerced, ‘press-ganged’ Generation Rent.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Displacement, evictions, Generation Rent, youth homelessness, precarity, private renting.
    School: School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > Department of Geography
    Depositing User: Paul Watt
    Date Deposited: 10 Sep 2020 10:21
    Last Modified: 10 Jun 2021 17:15


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