ALL but four per cent of Scots adults are estimated to rate their neighbourhood as either ‘very or fairly good’, according to a nationwide survey of households for the year 2021.
In more detail, according to the Scottish Household Survey 2021 (here), 58 per cent of adults rated their neighbourhood as ‘very good’, and 37 per cent rated it as a ‘fairly good’. Says the Scottish Government: “This is consistent with the results in 2020.”
Among other findings (here):
- Adults in the 20 per cent least deprived areas were more likely to rate their neighbourhood as a ‘very good’ place to live than those in the 20 per cent most deprived areas (80 per cent in the least deprived areas, and 30 per cent in the most deprived areas);
- Adults in accessible or remote rural areas were more likely to describe their neighbourhood as a ‘very good’ place to live (71 per cent and 76 per cent, respectively) than those in large and ‘other’ urban areas (53 per cent and 55 per cent, respectively);
- Adults were positive about the ‘people-based features’ of their neighbourhood, such as kindness and trust: 50 per cent strongly agreed that people in their neighbourhood are kind to each other, and 46 per cent strongly agreed that people in their neighbourhood can be trusted;
- However, physical aspects of the neighbourhood, such as the availability of places to socialise and meet new people, were rated less positively: 28 per cent of adults strongly agreed that there were places to meet and socialise in their neighbourhood, and only 21 per cent strongly agreed that there were welcoming places to meet new people;
- 81 per cent of adults felt a very strong or fairly strong sense of belonging to their neighbourhood in 2021. This varied with age, ethnic group and deprivation. Sense of belonging was lower for people aged 25-34, for ‘White: Other’ and minority ethnic groups and people living in the most deprived areas. Adults owning their own property were more likely to feel a very or fairly strong sense of belonging to their community (86 per cent), while adults who were privately renting were least likely to (58 per cent);
- Most adults agreed with statements about their involvement with other people in their neighbourhood: if I was alone and needed help, I could rely on someone to help me (89 per cent); if my home was empty, I could count on someone to keep an eye on it (89 per cent); and I could turn to someone for advice or support (80 per cent). This varied by area deprivation, with adults from the 20 per cent least deprived areas more likely to agree than those from the 20 per cent most deprived areas. The majority of adults in Scotland (95 per cent) agreed that they would assist their neighbours in an emergency;
- 53 per cent of adults perceived at least one problem to be very or fairly common in their neighbourhoods. Those living in the 20 per cent most deprived areas were more likely to experience neighbourhood problems. The neighbourhood problems that were perceived as most common were rubbish or littering (34 per cent) and animal nuisance (31 per cent). Adults living in large urban areas were most likely to identify rubbish or littering as a very or fairly common problem (44 per cent), compared with other groups;
- The majority of people (82 per cent) said they felt very or fairly safe walking alone in their neighbourhood after dark. Women felt less safe than men, with 73 per cent of women feeling very or fairly safe walking alone in their neighbourhood after dark, compared with 93 per cent of men. People are also likely to feel less safe if aged 60 or over, disabled or from the most deprived areas;
- There is a clear association between how adults rated their neighbourhood and how safe they felt in their communities. 84 per cent of adults who rated their neighbourhood as ‘very/fairly good’ said they felt safe walking alone at night, compared with just 34 per cent of adults who rated their neighbourhood as ‘very poor’. The vast majority of adults (98 per cent) felt very or fairly safe when in their home alone at night, although this was lower for people who rated their neighbourhood as ‘very poor’ (83 per cent); and
- Nine per cent reported that they had experienced discrimination and seven per cent had experienced harassment in the last 12 months. Some groups were more likely than others to report having experienced discrimination or harassment in Scotland, for instance people who are gay, lesbian or bisexual and people from minority ethnic groups. The perceived reasons for discrimination include sex or gender (19 per cent), age (16 per cent) and nationality (16 per cent).
Pictured: Penicuik, Midlothian, Picture credit: Place Design Scotland
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