National Government defines being ‘socially excluded’ as:
“being excluded from society, or parts of society, as a result of one of more of the following factors: unemployment; financial hardship; youth or old age; ill health (physical or mental); substance abuse or dependency including alcohol and drugs; discrimination on the grounds of sex, race, disability, ethnic origin, religion, belief, creed, sexual orientation or gender re-assignment; poor educational or skills attainment; relationship and family breakdown; poor housing (that is housing that does not meet basic habitable standards; crime (either as a victim of crime or as an offender rehabilitating into society).”
Social inclusion means preventing people from becoming socially excluded, relieving the needs of those people who are socially excluded and assisting them to integrate into society.
The theme of social inclusion cuts across many different themes and areas of work. Shropshire Council works in many different ways with other local partners within the public, private and voluntary sector to prevent social exclusion. In particular it supports work across the Marches LEP area to deliver the social inclusion priority as part of the Marches European Structural and Investment (ESIF) Strategy.
Within the ESIF Strategy social inclusion is more specifically defined as supporting the socially excluded and under-represented groups to address barriers to their participating in activities that will improve their economic wellbeing. The objective is to move those furthest away from the labour market into employment by addressing barriers. Barriers may include:
- Caring responsibilities & access to childcare
- Digital exclusion
- Drug & alcohol dependency
- Basic literacy & numeracy skills & ESOL
- Family parenting & relationship problems
- Health problems
- Learning difficulties and disabilities
- Life skills
You can find out more about these barriers and the work now taking place to address them on the Marches Building Better Opportunities website.
You can find out more about health, housing and skills elsewhere on Shropshire Council’s website.
Other Shropshire research related to social inclusion includes digital inclusion.