BlessWorld Foundation International

Affecting the World Through Health
A Global Health Initiative

Global Health and Social Injustice



Social injustice may be defined as inequities or unfair actions and practices in the society, usually by the dominant populace against the minority groups. It has been described as the unequal distribution of advantages and disadvantages in all areas of life in a society. Like every kind of inequity, social injustice is a threat to health and wellbeing, and can affect all aspects of life including education, housing, employment, income, access to health services, transportation and government benefits and services. The major example of social injustice is discrimination, which can also be considered the root cause of all other social injustices. Other manifestations of social injustice include unequal distribution of wage relative to labor, oppression, religious violence, racism, patriotism, casteism, capitalism, classism, ableism, sexism, ageism, and homophobia.

As stated earlier, most forms of social injustice are rooted in discrimination. Discrimination is the biased and unequal treatment of persons or groups of persons for reasons based on illegal stereotypes and prejudices such as age, race, gender, sex, race and other factors. It is considered an illegal act by the federal and state laws of the United States, and many other countries. Discrimination is evident in many areas in the society including employment and right to promotion, availability of housing, opportunities for education and scholarships, civil rights and use of facilities. Surveys conducted by researchers at Brown University found that in the US, minority groups at every income level live in poorer neighborhoods than white people with comparable incomes. In addition, another study in Arizona showed that between 2006 and 2007, highway patrol was more likely to stop drivers who were African Americans, Native Americans, Middle Easterners and Hispanics compared to Caucasian in all the studied highways. These are not co-incidences but socially and structurally constructed limitations that beset minority groups.

Discrimination is a mindset mostly caused by thoughts, theories and principles that are promoted by cultural beliefs and prejudices or stereotypes. One way to reduce discrimination is through government intervention via laws and regulation that prohibit it, and punish offenders. A second way to reduce discrimination is to promote and encourage diversity in societies. Diversity is necessary because it helps to create a color-blind society rather and having a color-conscious society where social injustice thrives. Cultural diversity is important and can be promoted workplaces and schools by hiring and admitting people from various cultural, racial, and ethnic groups. A culturally diverse society enables people to learn and understand other cultures and perspectives by living and communicating with them daily, and in turn dispelling and nullifying societal stereotypes and personal biases.


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