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How can we combat social exclusion?

The authors behind the “Report on the World Social Situation 2016” answer the public’s questions based on the theme of leaving no one behind: the imperative of inclusion development.

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Using the Facebook platform to encourage an online, global dialogue, the authors responded to questions for a full hour on the importance of tackling the issue of social exclusion of vulnerable people.

 

Here a few standout Q&As:

What are some concreate governmental changes that can be implemented to combat gender based exclusion?

-       Changing norms and the status quo is complicated

-       Empowerment of women should not advocate gender stereotypes eg. increase women’s cash transfer for caregiving. Instead, social transfer schemes should incentivise men to partake in caregiving too.

-       Work with civil society to enjoy the rights to health care eg. building adequate sanitation facilities in schools, or conducting awareness campaigns

 

Discuss the relation between social exclusion and childhood development, and the role of early intervention.

-       Disadvantages in education, health, employment, income etc is the symptom of the exclusion of these groups

-       Childhood development breaks the cycle of poverty by empowering them to contribute to economic growth.

-       Disadvantage and social exclusion begins between birth and age 3

 

Social exclusion is the result of “bad governance”

-       Governments play a major in addressing attitudes that perpetuate social exclusion.

 

Discrimination is the root cause of social exclusion. What can be done?

-       Adopting human rights legislation, with a follow up.

-       Civil society defend grass root society- modify school curriculum to change attitudes to diversity.

-       Human rights commission, criminal justice court and UNDP can play a role in ending exclusion.

 

Millions of vulnerable children are missing from population data. How can we help end this social exclusion?

-       Addressing the data gap is a key challenge

-       These individuals uncounted and invisible to statistic are most vulnerable

-       Institutions play an important role- census enumeration

-       Improve birth registration

 

Economic Exclusion

-       Everyone must have access to health care, sustainable education and employment

-       Not all employment and labour helps people escape poverty. An informal economy reinforces poverty.

-       Promote entrepreneurship among youth is essential

-       Macroeconomic policies should not be focused only on inflation control, but should contribute to economic growth.

 

There is a lack of intersectionality in the decision making process. For example, there is a vibrant movement towards organic produce which overpowers the more pressing issue of food desserts in the US. How can we get those voices from vulnerable populations to take part in the decision making process?

-       DESA is a platform for consensus building among international community

-       Institutions and norms that promote inclusion and empowerment are influenced by civil society, NGOs, trade unions and individuals living in poverty with a voice in the public sphere

 

How does civil society hold governments accountable?

-       Forming broad coalitions of various stakeholders- pluralistic approach

-       Internet and social media is an important tool- social mobilisation and public participation


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