Figure 2: differences between exclusion, segregation, integration and inclusion (Addapted from: http://www.sanmarcoargentano-polis.it/ARCHIVIO/02.COMMENTI/2017/L’inclusione.htm)
The Committee of United Nations highlights the importance of recognizing the differences between exclusion, segregation, integration and inclusion.
Exclusion happens when people with disability are directly or indirectly prevented from access to education, work, and community activities. Social exclusion is defined as the inability to participate in the economic, cultural and social life of society. It is the denial of civil, political rights of citizens.
Segregation is a type of organization where people with disabilities live in separate environments designed or used to respond to a particular or various impairment. They are divided from others and people without disabilities.
Integration is a form of placing persons with disabilities in already existing educational and employment institutions, considering that people with disabilities can adjust to the standardized requirements of such institutions.
Inclusion is an organization of systemic reforming and applying changes and adaptations in content, teaching and employment methods, approaches, structures and strategies in education, work-force, community living in order to overcome barriers with a vision serving to provide all people with disability with an equitable and participatory living and environment that best corresponds to their requirements and preferences (Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, 2016).
Some authors also see the process of inclusion as combining different important concepts:
- “Presence - participating in different settings where people without disabilities can engage. These could be classrooms, work related meetings, neighbourhoods, and community events.
- Choice – gaining different experiences they can learn and make conclusions from, choosing and taking part in activities they prefer.
- Competence - being recognized for strengths, contributing, having opportunities to learn more.
- Respect and Valued Roles - being seen as a person - as well as a person with a disability, being valued by others, not being seen as out of the norm or as a “curiosity.”
- Participation - engaging with others, having a wide variety of relationships being known and knowing others, being part of the event--not just an observer.
- Belonging - a very strong feeling that a person feels when they are valued by others, when others call just to talk or invite him or her to go to a party or “hang out” at the mall.” (Community Inclusion, 2011)
Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (2016), United Nations. Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. General comment No.4.
Illinois Department of Human Services. (2011). Community Inclusion.