With reference to two different groups of people discuss how social exclusion might manifest itself. Use evidence from research to substantiate your arguments.

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Claire Fryer


Critical issues and debates in the delivery of welfare

With reference to two different groups of people discuss how social exclusion might manifest itself.  Use evidence from research to substantiate your arguments.

There is no straightforward definition of social exclusion, however it is closely linked to concepts of poverty and social deprivation and inequality.  Social exclusion is about becoming detached from the opportunities and normal ways of life of mainstream society with little or no step of ever bridging the gap.

Social exclusion affects an individual’s opportunity to find good work decent housing, adequate health care, quality education and safe and secure living conditions as well as their treatment by the legal and criminal justice systems.  The most important characteristic of social exclusion is that these problems are linked and mutually reinforcing, and can combine to create a complex and fast moving vicious cycle.  The complex problem of social exclusion appears to be intensified and more severe for individuals that belong to multiple excluded groups.

The stigma and discrimination which users of mental health services face on a daily basis make them amongst the most socially excluded groups in our society.

Mental health problems are common and widely misunderstood; one adult in six suffers from mental health problems of varying severity which include a wide spectrum of conditions from anxiety to psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia.  Mental health problems often co-exist with other problems such as substance abuse, homelessness, poor physical health and learning disabilities.

Once mental health problems develop they can often have a negative impact on employability, housing, household income, opportunities to access services and social resources, which potentially lead to severe economic deprivation and social isolation, and experience a wide range of types of exclusion which can affect an individuals quality of life, increase their social exclusion and also contribute to mental health.

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Public attitudes to mental health problems surface in many different ways.  They are apparent in the language people use to describe mental illness and in their reactions to those experiencing mental distress.  

“All societies have struggled with the impact of mental illness and rejection and avoidence of mentally ill people are common.  Even when the mad have been accorded a place of honour as in culture that believe mentally ill people have been touched by the Great Spirit, they have remained outside the group and have been feared”

(Sam Sussman, the community’s response to mentally ...

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