Diversity is the differences between individuals and groups when looking at gender, cultural and religious beliefs, disabilities, sexual preferences and appearance. Diversity brings strength to society, but unfortunately it is often seen as a problem.
Equality is ensuring individuals or groups of individuals are treated fairly and no less favourably, specific to their needs, which include things such as race, gender, age, disabilities etc. Promoting equality should remove discrimination and also allow individuals in society opportunities which are as good as opportunities experienced by other people.
Inclusion at its simplest is ‘the state of being included’. Inclusion is to include everyone and meet their differences are respected. Inclusion involves identifying and breaking down barriers that prevent individuals from being involved, taking part or fitting in.
Discrimination is to treat someone differently, because either the individual or the individuals’ family are seen as part of a different group in society. The differences between people can lead to animosity, which can cause divisions and conflict in society and may also rise to prejudice. Discrimination doesn’t always only have effect on the individual being discriminated against. In many situations it can also have an effect on friends or families of the individual, those who inflict discrimination and also the wider society. An individual can face many effects due to discrimination. They may begin to feel withdrawn, isolated or depressed.
It may also affect their ability to build relationships or even maintain relationships they already have. Physical effects such as headaches, loss or growth of appetite, sleeplessness and lack of energy may also occur. On the other hand discrimination can have a positive effect on an individual, making them emotionally stronger and determined to fight discrimination. Family members and friends may also be affected seeing their friend or family is being discriminated against.
They may distance themselves from the individual or share the individuals’ affects due to concern and hurt. An individual being discriminated against can also have an effect on the wider society. A group of individuals may also share the same quality as the individual being discriminated against, for example, religion. If a Hindu person is being discriminated against, other Hindu individuals may feel withdrawn or scared therefore distance themselves from society in order to avoid being discriminated against as well Those who inflict discrimination are also affected. Discrimination which leads to assuming that certain individuals are inferior to others can lead to them having false views of the world.
Inclusive practice is working towards breaking down barriers. When barriers are broken down individuals and groups can begin to feel a part of a diverse society where they can be themselves and treated equally. Having a group of individuals all included in a setting also shows them that all different, diverse individuals are the same and should not be discriminated against. Inclusive practice should help individuals identify differences in a positive way.