Health and Social Problems Are Worse in More Unequal Countries

Why More Equality?

Evidence Shows That

Health and Social Problems Are Worse in More Unequal Countries

1) In rich countries, a smaller gap between rich and poor means a happier, healthier, and more successful population. Just look at the US, the UK, Portugal, and New Zealand in the top right of this graph, doing much worse than Japan, Sweden or Norway in the bottom left. 

2) Meanwhile, more economic growth will NOT lead to a happier, healthier, or more successful population. In fact, there is no relation between income per head and social well-being in rich countries.

3) If the UK were more equal, we’d be better off as a population. For example, the evidence suggests that if we halved inequality here:

  • Murder rates could halve
  • Mental illness could reduce by two thirds
  • Obesity could halve
  • Imprisonment could reduce by 80%
  • Teen births could reduce by 80%
  • Levels of trust could increase by 85%

4) It’s not just people in poorer communities who would do better. The evidence suggests people all the way up would benefit, although it’s true that the poorest would gain the most.

5) These findings hold true, whether you look across developed nations, or across the 50 states of the USA.

More Questions?

We might have answered some of them already, and we are continuing to add further analysis as it becomes available. We also go into much more detail on all the evidence. And if you’re convinced, and would like to help us promote the importance of equality, please join us in taking action.

Watch Today’s Inequality Report