Social exclusion is the process in which individuals or people are systematically blocked from (or denied full access to) various rights, opportunities and resources that are normally available to members of a different group, and which are fundamental to social integration and observance of human rights within that particular group (e.g., housing, employment, healthcare, civic engagement, democratic participation, and due process).
Alienation or disenfranchisement resulting from social exclusion can be connected to a person's social class, race, skin color, religious affiliation, ethnic origin, educational status, childhood relationships, living standards, or appearance. Such exclusionary forms of discrimination may also apply to people with a disability, minorities, LGBTQ+ people, drug users, institutional care leavers, the elderly and the young. Anyone who appears to deviate in any way from perceived norms of a population may thereby become subject to coarse or subtle forms of social exclusion.
The outcome of social exclusion is that affected individuals or communities are prevented from participating fully in the economic, social, and political life of the society in which they live. This may result to a resistance in form of demonstrations, protests, or lobbying from the excluded people.
Most of the characteristics listed in this article are present together in studies of social exclusion, due to exclusion's multidimensionality .
Another way of articulating the definition of social exclusion is as follows: