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Unemployment and risk of minor psychiatric disorder in young people: cross-sectional and longitudinal evidence

  • M. H. Banks (a1) and P. R. Jackson (a1)


Two age cohorts of young people were interviewed at times up to 2½ years after leaving school to investigate the association between unemployment and risk of minor psychiatric morbidity, as assessed by the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ), taking into account differences due to sex, ethnic group and educational qualifications. Cross-sectional data are presented on 2767 interviews. The psychometric properties of the GHQ justified the use of a total score. Although females had a higher risk of psychiatric morbidity, the strongest association was between unemployment and GHQ. The association between unemployment and GHQ scores was shown to be present after controlling for sex, ethnic group and educational qualification differences. Longitudinal analyses showed that the experience of unemployment was more likely to create increased symptoms, rather than the reverse.


Corresponding author

1Address for correspondence: Dr M. H. Banks, MRC/SSRC Social and Applied Psychology Unit, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN.


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Unemployment and risk of minor psychiatric disorder in young people: cross-sectional and longitudinal evidence

  • M. H. Banks (a1) and P. R. Jackson (a1)


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