Mental health, social exclusion and social inclusion

Secker, Jenny (2009) Mental health, social exclusion and social inclusion. Mental Health Review Journal, 14 (4). pp. 4-11. ISSN 2042-8758

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In the UK the concept of social exclusion came into widespread use in mental health following the publication of an influential Social Exclusion Unit report in 2004. Based on a comparison of ways of defining social exclusion with the mental health literature, this article begins by outlining a social systems approach to understanding social exclusion. The approach is later used to examine the position of people with mental health needs in the UK. First, however, a common assumption that social inclusion constitutes the opposite of social exclusion is addressed and an alternative way of thinking about the two concepts is put forward. A further assumption that social inclusion is self-evidently desirable is also critiqued from political and service user perspectives before drawing conclusions from the evidence reviewed. These concern a need for policy initiatives to focus on tackling the structural barriers that work to exclude people with mental health needs, as well as on challenging the deep-rooted prejudice and stigmatisation that reinforce those barriers; and a need to be mindful of the context in which inclusion policies are implemented, the assumptions that become implicit within these policies, and the possible consequences of their adoption as a moral imperative.

Item Type: Journal Article
Faculty: ARCHIVED Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education (until September 2018)
Depositing User: Repository Admin
Date Deposited: 18 Nov 2010 11:00
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2021 16:18

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