Social Exclusion and Marginalization among the Disabled

Social Exclusion and Marginalization among the Disabled

Disabled people have been marginalized in society for centuries. The situation is even worse for disabled children who have to bear with social exclusion from a relatively tender age. The current social structure and attitudes in the society foster an environment that segregates the disabled, driving them further below the poverty line. There is need for implementation of effective strategies that can help eliminate physical, organizational, attitudinal, and social barriers that hinder the physically challenged from achieving active citizenship. Currently, there are two disability discrimination acts that protect the disabled from any forms of discrimination. These include the Disability Discrimination Act enacted in 1995 and the Special Education Needs and Disability (NI) Order that was issued in 2005. Although these laws have been in existence for quite some time, they have not been able to protect the disabled from social exclusion and marginalization.

This research will:

Analyze the impacts of social exclusion and marginalization among people with disabilities.

Research questions

The research will address four research questions relating to the issue of social exclusion among the disabled in the society. The following are the specific questions to be addressed:

  • What are the specific measures that can be implemented to alleviate poverty, social exclusion, deprivation, and to generally improve the standard of living among the disabled?
  • What is the connection between disability and poverty in the region as well as in other countries?
  • What are the impacts of social inclusion and other measures that can be given to the disabled to help them adjust to the environment and improve their function?
  • What activities in local communities can be used to help the disabled improve their social interaction skills and inclusivity in the community?

Related paper: The Theoretical Concepts of Privilege and Oppression

This research will examine ways in which the disabled can be economically empowered to escape the poverty trap. This comes after the realization that majority of disabled are generally earn lower incomes and are more likely to remain below the poverty line. Disabled children have relatively limited opportunities with regard to accessing the available local opportunities such as jobs and leisure activities. Disabled children are constantly afraid of bullying by their peers or from other sources which forces them to live in isolation, avoiding public places or engaging in interactive social activities such as sports. There is limited research available on the measures that can be used to help the disabled adjust to the environment. This paper will analyze some of these measures in detail. The paper will also look at ways in which disable children can be assisted to improve their social interaction skills. This includes ways of dealing with negative peers and bullies.

Literature review

Trani & Loeb (2012) investigates the relationship between disability and poverty, specifically trying to establish the robustness of the relationship. The research analyses data collected from household surveys conducted in Zambia and Afghanistan. An exploratory analysis was used to establish the relationship between the two concepts. Logistic regression was also used to determine the relationship between disability and poverty. The interdependency between disability and poverty is evaluated from different angles, and not just from an income perspective. The results indicate that that poverty is closely linked to lack of education opportunities, lower access to health facilities, and substantial unequal opportunities in the job market segment. The research focuses on multiple dimensions of poverty including non-monetary aspects such as well-being of the disabled. The specific aspects considered include life expectancy, health aspects, basic education, shelter, and infant mortality. The duo identifies existing knowledge gaps in previous researches that mainly focused on income as the most important dimension in assessing disability and poverty.

Dessemontet, Bless, & Morin (2012) conducted a study comparing the likely outcomes of children suffering from intellectual disabilities and placed in special schools to those having similar challenges but who had the opportunity to interact and experience mainstream education. The aim of the research was to acquire more knowledge regarding the impacts of inclusive practices among children with intellectual disabilities. The research methodology adapted was a comparative study of 34 children suffering from intellectual disability and a control group made up of 34 children. Barron & Ncube (2010) examines the link among disability, health and poverty. The duo assert that the link among the three are more intricate than previously thought. The duo analyzes available literature in peer-reviewed journal articles that specifically examine the link among the three. Their research also identifies existing knowledge gaps and provide future guidance.

Related paper: Developmental Perspectives on Behavior

Lamport, Graves, & Ward (2012) investigates the positive outcomes that can be obtained through encouraging students with behavioral and emotional disabilities to engage in interactive social activities such as playing. The authors outline the drawbacks that students with disabilities may face as a result of inclusion into the mainstream education. This research aims at outlining a suitable model of education for learners with disabilities. By conducting a meta-analysis of recent studies on the subject, the authors are able to establish the various strongpoints on either side of the debate. This research is useful since it comprises of an extensive literature review that explores the challenges as well as benefits of inclusion.


Barron, T., & Ncube J.M. (2010). Poverty and Disability. London: Leonard Cheshire Disability.

Dessemontet, R.S., Bless, G. & Morin, D. (2012). Effects of inclusion on the academic     achievement and adaptive behavior of children with intellectual disabilities. Journal of         Intellectual Disability Research, 56 (6), 579–587.

Lamport, M. A., Graves, L., & Ward, A. (2012). Special needs students in inclusive classrooms: The impact of social interaction on educational outcomes for learners with emotional and        behavioral disabilities. European Journal of Business and Social Sciences, 1(5): 54-69.

Trani, J.-F. and Loeb, M. (2012), Poverty and disability: A vicious circle? Evidence from             Afghanistan and Zambia. Journal of International Development, 24: (5): 19–52.