Authors: Sherrill Evans, Peter Huxley, Martin Webber, Bill Davidson & Sarah King.
Event: 2005 TheMHS Conference
Subject: social work, social care UK, discrimination, social exclusion, national mental health policy, interventions, social inclusion,
Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers
Abstract: People with significant mental health problems are among the most socially excluded in society. It is no surprise therefore that social inclusion is a key priority for mental health policy and practice, and for users of mental health services. The papers that follow examine the concept of social inclusion in relation to mental health, from multiple perspectives and at multiple-levels. First, drawing largely upon evidence from the UK it highlights ways in which mental health policy can seek to address the discrimination and social exclusion that are associated with mental health problems. Second, using an example from the UK it explores how service developments might help consumers to achieve greater social inclusion. Third, two complementary approaches to the measurement of social inclusion are presented; the first approach derives from a participatory model of inclusion and uses domain based indicators of objective and subjective life quality to measure engagement in society; the second focuses on a social capital model of inclusion, measured in terms of access to resources via social interactions, networks and relationships. Finally, drawing upon evidence from two UK studies, the impact of mental health problems is explored and the effect of interventions provided by mental health services is evaluated using these social outcome indicators.