Diversity – The differences between individuals in society, differences could stem from ethnicity, gender, sexuality, disabilities and appearance. Equality – Each individual having the same opportunities to achieve and experience life to the same standard as other individuals Inclusion – The process of identifying differences and barriers in individuals and working towards adapting activities or experiences to enable the individual to participate Discrimination – Treating someone less favourably than other individuals because of differences such as; ethnicity, gender, sexuality, disabilities and appearance Participation – Enabling all individuals to join in and experience activities to their highest capability According to the ‘Every Child Matters’ government publication there are 5 outcomes that can directly link to the importance of equality, diversity and inclusion and how they can be achieved; •Being Healthy – ‘so that they are physically, mentally, emotionally and sexually healthy, have healthy lifestyles and choose not to take illegal drugs’. A child or young person who has been enabled to participate and be included among others is more likely to develop well emotionally, physically and mentally •Staying safe – ‘from maltreatment, neglect, violence, sexual exploitation, accidental injury and death, bullying and discrimination, crime and anti-social behaviour in and out of school, have security and stability and are cared for’
A child or young person who has been educated from an early age about different cultures and backgrounds will be less likely to grow up to discriminate, bully or show anti-social behaviour to people of different cultures and backgrounds
•Enjoying and achieving – ‘so that they are ready for school, attend and enjoy school, achieve stretching national educational standards at primary and secondary school, achieve personal and social development and enjoy recreation’ A child or young person who has gone through their school life being discriminated against may not achieve personal and social development resulting in them not achieving the grades they need to go on to further education, employment and not being able to successfully deal with significant life changes in later life.
•Making a positive contribution – ‘so that they engage in decision-making, support their community and environment, engage in law-abiding and positive behaviour in and out of school, develop positive relationships, choose not to bully and discriminate, develop self-confidence, successfully deal with significant life changes and challenges and develop enterprising behaviour’ A child or young person who has not been educated well about diversity and has grown up discriminating and being prejudice against others are less likely to grown up to be law-abiding and show positive behaviour or build positive relationships.
•Achieving economic well-being – ‘so that they engage in further education, employment or training on leaving school, are ready for employment, live in decent homes and sustainable communities, have access to transport and material goods, live in households free from low income’ Again, if a child or young person has been discriminated against at school they may not finish their education and not go on to achieve the grades they need to go on to further education or employment.
SHC 33 – 1.2
Discrimination on an individual can cause them to lose their potential in society and not develop fully in their abilities, talents and education. In later life they may not be able to make a full contribution to society. It will affect friends and family by making them not feel welcome for example; in child care settings, schools or employment settings. Those who inflict discrimination on others may go on to have a false and distorted outlook on life; they may also go on to not be law-abiding as they grow up as discrimination itself is against the law.
SHC 33 – 2.1/CYP 3.7 – 2.1
There are legislations and codes of practise that relate to equality, diversity and discrimination such as: Every Child Matters – is a government initiative for England and Wales. It was set up partly in response to the death of Victoria Climbié to ensure that children, no matter what background or circumstance they come from will be supported to;
•Enjoy and Achieve
•To achieve economic wellbeing
•To then go on to provide a positive contribution to their community`
UN convention on the Rights of the Children – in 1989 world leaders officially agreed that children under the age of 18 should have the right to •An education – children have the right to free primary and secondary school educations. Discipline in schools must respect the child’s human dignity •To be healthy – the government must provide good quality health care, clean environments, clean water and nutritious food. Rich countries must help poorer countries to achieve this also •Knowledge of information and rights – All children should be able to access reliable information from the media that they will understand. The government must also make rights of children known to adults and children. •To live without discrimination – the convention applies to every child no matter what ethnicity, gender, religion and abilities they have. The convention also gives children the freedom of speech and thoughts of their own SHC 33 – 3.3
Discrimination should be challenged when we encounter it. If adults or children behave in discriminatory ways in the setting, there should be strategies to carefully challenge what has been said or done.
It is important to support anyone who has been discriminated against however, it is also important to support anyone who is behaving or speaking in a discriminatory way. So that hopefully they will change their behaviour for the future.
It is important to challenge discrimination in a way that promotes change. Children are easily influenced by the adult world around them and can pick up prejudiced views and even behave in discriminatory ways. Settings should be celebrating our differences, abilities, ethnicities and cultures so
children and parents can see them in a positive way. This could be done by implementing celebration boards, having dressing up clothes from different cultures, having books about different cultures/abilities/religions.
CYP 3.7 – 1.1, 3.1
There are many social, economic and cultural factors that can impact on the lives of children and young people. Children and young people who are in care may suffer educationally e.g if a child or young person has recently been fostered or adopted there may be a lot for them to deal with emotionally especially in cases where abuse has been involved. Poverty can affect the mental and physical health of children and the parents as the income may not be enough to provide for the family as
CYP 3.7 – 1.1, 3.1 – continued
hoped and accommodation may be poor e.g. may have damp which can cause health problems. Living in a community amongst others with anti-social behaviour can isolate some families making parents reluctant to let children play out and socialise with others. Rural communities can also get isolated from others due to being far away from educational and health facilities with limited transport. A parent or child who has a disability could have their educational development greatly affected. A child with a disability could miss a lot of school due to illness or hospitalisation; this could also affect their social and emotional development due to missing out on communicating with peers in educational and every day environments. A child whose parent has a disability may be a carer to their parent and miss out on every day activities and communication with children their own age.
Bereavements in families can affect the emotional and physical health of children and their parents e.g. if a parent loses a child it could have a knock on effect on the remaining children, seeing a parent finding it difficult to cope with the loss could make it even more difficult for the remaining children to come to terms with the loss. Different cultures can affect children and young people e.g. families that live in a way that varies from the norm; same sex couples may be discriminated against by anti-social individuals, which can affect the family as a whole emotionally and socially. Children from travelling families can have their educational development affected if they change schools often.
CYP 3.7 – 1.2
The income of parents can determine the outcome of children’s prospects of life choices and good health. Income affects the different types of areas in which children are brought up e.g. inner-city/suburban/rural, the quality of housing and the quality of food provided.
•Infant mortality rates are highest in families that earn the lowest incomes
•The chances of poor health in later life are greater
•Child accident rates are more than twice as higher
•Statistically, children from lower income families are likely to have poorer health than those from higher income families, often resulting from poor housing conditions, poor quality food, stress or depression
•Young adults may have less chance of employment in the future resulting from low achievement in education
•Children from lower income families are more likely to be involved in crime later on in life
•At school children are less likely to achieve to their full potential