SPI-B: Increasing adherence to COVID-19 preventative behaviours among young people
This paper was commissioned by CO communications colleagues to focus on how messaging and other techniques can be used to promote adherence in young people.
• Recent data indicates that ‘complete’ and ‘majority’ compliance with COVID-19 preventative behaviours, e.g. social distancing and staying at home, is substantially lower and declining among those aged 18-29 years compared to older groups (1). Data suggest that young people may have strong motivation to adhere, but this is undermined by lack of trust in government and lack of clear information.
• Ability to adhere will be affected by employment, education, and housing
Young people are more likely than adults to work in occupations with high numbers
of social contacts, and with less recourse to sick pay, which may undermine their motivation to seek testing and ability to isolate in response to symptoms (9).
• Universities and colleges also expose young people to very large numbers of social contacts. Young people are more likely to live in all-adult, crowded, multi-occupancy housing often with poor ventilation which may further contribute to rapid transmission.
• To increase impact, communication strategies which are aimed at changing individual behaviours should be complemented by practical interventions in institutions and the surrounding environment e.g., universities should be required to shift to remote learning immediately, and schools should distribute free face coverings. Communications interventions aiming to change individual behaviour will, on their own, have limited impact.
Read more: Government mind-manipulators targeting children and young people with ‘celebrities’ and ‘brands’ to make them conform to fascism – it’s all here from the SPI-B unit (essentially the Cabinet Office-owned Behavioural Insights Team) all of whose deeply sick members must be jailed for crimes against humanity