ATD Ireland have just launched a new report funded by IHREC; Breaking barriers: A participatory approach to defining socio- economic discrimination. This project brings together the voices of those with lived experience of poverty and socio- economic discrimination, academics and professionals working in the community and voluntary sector. We hope to raise awareness and build a deeper understanding of socio- economic discrimination and ultimately progress the #Addthe10th campaign to have socio- economic status recognised as the tenth ground of discrimination in Irish equality legislation.
This project aims to define the term socio – economic discrimination, and break it down into understandable parts; what is it, how and why does it happen, how does it impact people and what can we do to change it. As well as this, the report documents three years of campaign work in Ireland and internationally with the #addthe10th campaign to have socio- economic status recognised as the tenth ground of discrimination in Irish equality legislation.
“People treating us differently because of how we look, how we speak, where we live and our wealth…it is hurtful, toxic and it impacts our quality of life”.
We have merged together three years of interviews, public presentations and conversations with those with lived experience of socio-economic discrimination and interviews with 20 academics, professionals working in the community and voluntary sector and members of the #Addthe10th alliance. From there, we did a thematic analysis to form an understanding of all aspects of socio-economic discrimination. We then had some collective conversations with diverse participants where people could write down in their words, ‘what does socio-economic discrimination mean?’ This report breaks down socio- economic into six chapters based on the thematic analysis. Each chapter also includes its own colour and visual image.
Chapter 1: What is socio-economic status; This will include narrowing down the personal characteristics that can contribute to a person’s socio-economic status.
Chapter 2: What is socio-economic discrimination and what are the specific types of actions that can be considered discriminatory?
Chapter 3: What are the types of socio-economic discrimination, how and where is it perpetuated?
Chapter 4: What are the impacts of socio-economic discrimination, including the human and material impacts
Chapter 5: What are the underlying systemic structures and societal factors that allow socio-economic discrimination to arise?
Chapter 6: How to promote integration and inclusion. How can we combat socio-economic discrimination in the long term and how can we create further integration between different sections of society?
These chapters will be followed a discussion on the history of the campaign to add socio- economic status as a tenth ground, some recent political and policy developments, and a legal view on defining socio- economic discrimination. Finally, the report ends with a conclusion by Dr Joe Whelan from Trinity College Dublin and some final thoughts from our ATD Ireland Community Activists.
Thank you so much to IHREC for funding this project and to everyone involved in any way.