Date of Award

Spring 5-2019

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Advisor(s)

MARYLN ALLICOCK, MPH, PHD

Second Advisor

KATELYN JETELINA, MPH, PHD

Third Advisor

KAI ZHANG, MA, MS, PHD

Abstract

Gentrification is a wildly contentious, highly politicalized issue that some scholars view as beneficial and others view as harmful. Historically, public health researchers have studied several neighborhood effects on health but only recently has this research field evolved to include studies specifically looking at the health ramifications associated with this neighborhood-change process. This secondary analysis is one of the first studies to examine the effect neighborhood-level gentrification has on mental health status in a childhood and adolescent sample. Results find that no main effect exists between gentrification and mental health problems directly. However, a statistically significant interaction-- between gentrification and perceptions of community safety-- was discovered to increase the odds of having children with mental health problems for caregivers perceiving their gentrifying communities as safe. Future researchers should reattempt to unearth a similar interaction effect as well as determine if gentrification acts indirectly to compromise emotional health in childhood. Finally, the minority stress theory should be looked at as a potential model to frame the evidence being produced at the intersection of gentrification and mental health.

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