MIDLAS sees people who experience social exclusion on a daily basis. Isolation can lead to poverty and a feeling of hopelessness which furthers exclusion and maintains the downward spiraling cycle. We know that social exclusion has a devastating impact on individuals and can result in mental health issues, substance abuse, serious debt, and homelessness.
A report in the Australian this week discussed the Federal Government’s ‘Social Inclusion Unit’ that was established by the Gillard government in 2007. The vision of the Social Inclusion Unit was to develop ‘…a socially inclusive society in which all Australians feel valued and have the opportunity to fully participate in the life of our society.’ Like me, you’re probably wondering: What is this unit? Where did it come from? What do they do? And most importantly; how are they actually planning to eradicate social exclusion and foster social inclusion?
In 2010 the unit published a report called ‘Foundations for a Stronger, Fairer Australia,’ which detailed the extent of social exclusion in Australia. The reporter from the Australian considered whether this unit should continue to exist in its current state, be altered or abolished completely. The question remains; how effective has the Social Inclusion Unit been?
Social isolation and exclusion occurs in almost every facet of Australian life and does not discriminate between race, gender, income, family structure, employment, or sexual preference. The fear of social exclusion can foster feelings of loneliness, depression, inability to cope, need to keep up appearances and the social demand to appear to have everything under control.
Thinking about your own situation, are you in fear of social exclusion affecting your life? The spiral of social exclusion can impact on your ability to fully engage in all life has to offer. Do you feel you are at times alienated from society, friends, family, work etc? Contact MIDLAS on 9250 2123 or leave a message for us at our website: www.midlas.org.au