Adverse Effects of Substandard Farm Labor Housing on an Individual’s Mental Health
Lennox, Madison R.
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In the United States, farmworkers and their families are often forced to live in decrepit, challenging conditions, with little chance of seeking improved standards of living without fear of retaliation. Housing and living conditions have been shown to have a considerable influence on an individual’s physical and mental health. Recent studies have been conducted on basic demographic and health needs of migrant farmworkers in rural communities through anecdotal research. However, because this population is so marginalized, research on mental health of this population is scarce. This paper reviews literature on substandard housing and living conditions and its consequences on health, emphasizing mental health outcomes in lower socioeconomic status, particularly migrant farmworker, communities. Future research should be conducted by advocates of various backgrounds (e.g., psychological, medical, legal) to determine more direct relationships between housing conditions and standards, and migrant farmworker mental health over time, and to provide possible solutions or assistance for this marginalized population.