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These families cherished multi-generational living. But Covid-19 has wrecked it

October 16, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Britain's health minister issued a stark warning to the country's young people in early September: "Don't kill your gran by catching coronavirus and then passing it on."

In the UK, people from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities are more likely than their White peers to be living in such groups.

Akbar told CNN that communities such as his own South Asian one often lived within multi-generational households for a range of reasons -- including faith, culture and affordability.

"Most of the taking care of older relatives is done by family -- it's beneficial to society but sadly during the Covid-19 crisis, that has become a negative," because of how the virus spreads among people living in multi-generational households, he said.

Amoah Arko described her experience as "odd and isolating," but said she is once again planning to leave the family home due to fears of a second wave of the coronavirus.

Saima Afzal, a 49-year-old British Asian woman living in Blackburn, said her son and granddaughter have lived away from the family home for three weeks because of concerns about her health.

"It works out, between the two of us we maintain the household income," she said, adding that she also relied on the help of the wider family as she does not qualify for government support.

According to the Runnymede Trust, a think tank which focuses on racial inequality, people of Bangladeshi heritage were most likely to live in households with more members.

UK government data shows that across every socioeconomic level in Britain, White British people live in less crowded homes than members of every other ethnic group, regardless of whether or not they own their own home.

She hopes the UK government will tailor more of its advice to such communities; she believes little was done at the start of the pandemic to advise people on how to isolate themselves within larger households.

A recent Runnymede Trust report found that BAME people were more than twice as likely as White people to live in households of five or more.

"Nobody wants to be living in an overcrowded home," Begum said.

"People are now hyper-aware of the risk that younger members of the family may bring the virus in," she said.

I've had conversations where people have said: 'No, we're not going to split our household apart because of the virus. '"

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