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Social Exclusion Deprivation

“In recent decades, crime prevention has taken on increasingly 'exclusive' forms"

What is Social Exclusion?

According to Vleminckx and Berghman (2001), “social exclusion” is a concoction (or blend) of multidimensional and mutually reinforcing processes of deprivation, associated with progressive dissociation from social milieu, resulting in the isolation of individuals and groups from the mainstream of opportunities society has to offer. Mayers, et.al., (2001) defined it as an inability to exercise the social rights of citizens to a basic standard of living and as barriers to participation in the major social and occupational opportunities of the society. Methodologists (Atkinson et. al. 2002) use the term as “shorthand for a range of concerns considered to be important in setting the European social agenda” and in ‘the fields that people have in mind when they talk about social rights.” In contrast to poverty, which is exclusively economic, material, or resource-based, social exclusion offers a more holistic understanding of deprivation (de Haan 1999).

The risk of crime increases with social exclusion and low income: people living in poorer areas tend to be more at risk than people living in more affluent areas. (Bowling, 1998). Based on Eurostat 2000 the following are the indicators of Social Exclusion: Financial difficulties in the household; unaffordability of some basic needs; unaffordability of consumer durables; disadvantageous housing conditions; poor health: life expectancy; self-perceived health status; Infrequent contacts with friends and relatives and dissatisfaction with work or main activity. These indicators are the main cause of crimes in the society. This drive the European government as well as the Americans to create preventive method in order to decrease the statistics of crimes committed.

Crime rate rises during the Cultural Revolution was followed by economic crisis and great individualism, which began in most advanced industrial countries before the early Seventies and then continued to rise, often at a greatly augmented rate, as the economic recession began to bite. In the Eighties and Nineties, the process of social exclusion is involved. The process includes the involving of the transformation and separation of the labour markets and the rise in structural unemployment, and the exclusion arising out from the attempts to control the crime that arises from changed circumstances and excluding nature of anti-social behaviour. The process of desegregation in the sphere of community and the sphere of work The erosion of the inclusive world of the modernist period, involved processes of desegregation both in the sphere of community (the rise of individualism) and the sphere of work (transformation of the labour markets).

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As an example, from a situation where exclusion creates crimes to one where attempts at inclusion are met by violence and aggression. The most prominent change during the post-War period, is the entry of women into the labour market and their participation in public life whether leisure, politics, the arts, is per haps the most profound structural change of the post-War period.

Today crimes are committed as a result of exclusion. The case of violence against women is a key example, although racist violence is a close parallel. Violence in these two examples can occur, therefore, as a result of exclusion and inclusion, and it can be caused by relative deprivation and by clashes among individuals demanding equality and others resisting them. Of course, where both relative deprivation and individualism occur together as in the macho-culture of lower class, young unemployed males when confronting the demands for equality of women, often in poorly paid yet steady employment, one would expect a particularly high rate of conflict often resulting in the preference to setting up homes separately and the preponderance of single mothers.

Because of the increasing number of crimes committed caused by the indicators mentioned above crime prevention has taken into exclusive form. The future of exclusion does not augur well. Firstly, the demand for unskilled and semi-skilled manual labour has contracted in all the countries of the First World. The globalization of capital has meant that the factories of South East Asia can compete much more cheaply than in Europe and North America. The poor are isolated in inner-city ghettos, in orbital estates, and in ghost towns where capital originally led them, then left them stranded as it winged its way elsewhere, where labour was cheaper and expectations lower.

Crime Prevention Methods

There are several inclusive and exclusive forms in preventing crime; it includes 1) Situational crime prevention; 2) Social crime prevention; 3)

Situational crime prevention objective is to reduce crime by managing, designing and augmenting the physical environment by: a) reducing the opportunity to commit crime, simply by making it harder to offend; b) increasing the risk of detection if deterrence fails; and c) reducing the rewards of crime. The installation of surveillance cameras in public places, controlling access to buildings, car steering locks and gun controls are examples of situational measures that aim to reduce opportunities for the commission of crime. Security guards, baggage screening and surveillance cameras, are examples of situational measures aimed at increasing the risk of offenders being caught. Removing car stereos, cleaning up graffiti and property marking are examples of situational measures that may reduce the rewards of crime.

It has been argued that crime displacement significantly diminishes the efficacy of situational crime prevention strategies - for while crime rates may decrease in the area where situational projects have been undertaken, they might increase in other areas where these measures do not appear to exist.

Social crime prevention

By changing the social rather than the physical environment, social or community crime prevention prevents offending unlike the situational crime prevention. Interventions in this case provide tools for communities to use in an effort to minimize criminal behaviour by changing social conditions. The aim is to strengthen community bonds, increase levels of informal social control and thus stops actual or potential offenders. Social crime prevention measures could focus on making those who are in the way of offending feel more integrated into the community e.g. schemes such as youth 'drop in' centres and activity groups

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Developmental crime prevention either involves the early identification of potential offenders or victims and intervenes in some way to keep them from realising that potential or, works with those who have already offended or been victimised to prevent further offending or victimisation from taking place.

(www.aic.gov.au). For example, at the offender level, prevention could take the form of early childhood intervention for those deemed to be 'at risk' of offending. Projects in this case might attempt to improve children's health (physical and/or mental) and educational achievement. For those who have already offended, the prevention of future criminality could be sought through rehabilitation strategies aimed at reforming them through various 'treatment' regimes.

Victim-focussed prevention could also be centred on early intervention for those considered 'at risk' of victimisation or take place after victimisation has occurred to prevent repeat victimisation. Thus, victim-focussed intervention might include educational campaigns warning young children about the dangers of getting into cars with strangers or self-defence courses for women. Secondly, the introduction of more and more sophisticated computer software will eliminate many lower middle class jobs as well as making many lower rung professional jobs increasingly precarious.

Reference

Atkinson, T.,et.al. (2002), Social Indicators: The EU and Social Inclusion, London: Oxford University Press.

Bowling, B. (1998) Violent Racism: Victimisation, policing and social context. Oxford: Carendon Press)

De Haanm A., (1999) Social Exclusion: Towards a Holistic Understanding of Deprivation

Mayers, D. (2001), Introduction: In Social Exclusion and European Policy, p 1-26, Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar.

Preventing crime in Australia 1990 - 2002: a selected register of crime prevention projects http://www.aic.gov.au/research/cvp/register/def.html

Vleminckx, Koen, and Joseph, Bergman, (2001), Social Exclusion and the Welfare State: An Overview of Conceptual Issues and Policy Implications. P27-46.

Young, J. FROM INCLUSIVE TO EXCLUSIVE SOCIETY: NIGHTMARES IN THE EUROPEAN DREAM, http://www.malcolmread.co.uk/JockYoung/inclexcl.htm

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