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Introducing social work: a starter kit
Introducing social work: a starter kit

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1.3 The extent and forms of social disadvantage in society

This is a photograph is of a silhouette of a person shouting.
Figure 4

The impact of inequalities relating to gender, ethnicity, disability or age is affected by poverty in particular ways, resulting in differences in people’s experiences. For example:

  • In 2013, 26 per cent of female employees were paid below the living wage compared to 16 per cent of male employees (MacInnes et al., 2014).
  • Black African and Caribbean adults had (MacInnes et al., 2014) the highest unemployment of any ethnic group, at 12 per cent. This rate was twice as high as the unemployment rate for the whole population. When in employment, these groups were more likely to have lower rates of pay than white adults.
  • Research in Scotland revealed that families with a disabled adult are nearly twice as likely to be in poverty as others (Kenway et al., 2015). A factor contributing to the risk of poverty that disabled people face is the extra costs they incur in most areas of their everyday life due to their additional needs.
  • Experiences of poverty can also vary depending on a person’s geographical location, their kind of neighbourhood and the access it provides to jobs and services such as education, transport and social care.