If we are to be more effective at helping Men and Boys to get both the access to and the outcomes from services they deserve then we need to recognize that Men and Boys are a distinct group with specific needs.
The systematic resistance to identifying men as a hard-to-reach group with a distinct set of gendered barriers not only fails men, but is a missed opportunity that broad range of services could reap significant benefits from.
Is it coincidence that:
- Men under 45 are half as likely to visit their GP?
- Men are twice as likely to have undiagnosed diabetes?
- Men are half as likely to be diagnosed with depression?
- Men are twice as likely as women both to develop, and to die from, the ten most common cancers affecting both sexes?
- There is a mental health strategy for women but not for men?
If we are to create a City That Works For Everyone – Men And Boys Included then addressing the very practical barriers that men face to such as opening hours and locations that are compatible with their working patterns would be a good place to start.
Furthermore, taking supportive action to help Men and Boys overcome the barriers of male socialization that make it more difficult for men in general to seek help would have a radical impact on men’s health and wellbeing.