Social Justice Guidelines

What is Social Justice?

Social Justice involves the societal creation of fairness whereby individual rights are protected and realized, and all have access to opportunities, services, and resources. The enactment of social justice often involves a mindset of inclusivity and concepts of equity, access, equal privileges, diversity, and the protection and upholding of human rights. Ultimately, social justice aims to ensure that all individuals have the opportunity to live a healthy and fulfilled life. 

Consistent with our mission and vision, BCPHR places emphasis on social justice with the expectation that authors address this topic within their manuscripts. To facilitate this, we have provided authors with a checklist (please see below) describing components of social justice for possible incorporation. Not every checklist component is needed, but authors should ensure that some of these criteria are present before submission.

Social Justice Checklist

  • Racial and Ethnic Minorities: Communities of color, including African Americans, Hispanic/Latinx, Native Americans, Asian Americans, and Pacific Islanders, often face discrimination, systemic racism, and disparities in education, employment, healthcare, and criminal justice. 


  • Women and Gender Minorities: Women and individuals who identify outside of traditional gender norms may face gender-based discrimination, sexism, and gender inequality. They often experience disparities in areas such as pay, representation in leadership positions, reproductive rights, and access to education. 


  • Religious and Ethnic Minorities: Communities that face religious or ethnic discrimination, such as Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, and other minority religious groups, may experience prejudice, hate crimes, and limited access to resources and opportunities. 


  • LGBTQ+ Individuals: Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning individuals may experience marginalization, discrimination, and unequal treatment based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. They often face challenges related to acceptance, access to healthcare, legal rights, and safety. 


  • Indigenous Peoples: Indigenous communities, such as Native Americans, First Nations, and Aboriginal peoples, often face historical and ongoing marginalization, cultural erasure, land dispossession, and inadequate access to education, healthcare, and socioeconomic opportunities. 


  • People with Disabilities: Individuals with physical, sensory, intellectual, or developmental disabilities may face barriers to inclusion, accessibility, employment, and social participation. They often encounter discrimination, lack of accommodations, and limited access to resources.


  • Individuals with Mental Health Issues: People with mental health conditions may encounter stigma, discrimination, and limited access to appropriate mental health services. They may face challenges in employment, education, and social integration. 


  • Youth and Elderly Populations: Both young and elderly populations may be vulnerable to social injustices. Youth may face challenges related to education, bullying, mental health, and limited agency. The elderly may experience ageism, limited access to healthcare, isolation, and financial insecurity. 


  • Foster Care Youth: Children and young adults in the foster care system may experience instability, trauma, and a lack of support networks. They often face challenges transitioning into adulthood, accessing education, employment, and stable housing. 


  • Single Parents: Single parents, particularly single mothers, may face economic disadvantages, difficulties accessing childcare, and limited support networks. They often experience challenges balancing work, parenting, and personal well-being.


  • Socioeconomically Disadvantaged Communities: Low-income communities, including individuals living in poverty, may face systemic barriers to education, healthcare, housing, and employment. They often experience disparities in access to resources and opportunities.


  • Immigrants and Refugees: Immigrant and refugee communities often face challenges related to language barriers, cultural adaptation, xenophobia, and limited access to healthcare, education, employment, and legal protections. They may experience marginalization and discrimination based on their immigration status. 


  • Homeless Individuals: People experiencing homelessness often face numerous challenges, including lack of shelter, access to basic amenities, healthcare, employment opportunities, and social stigma. They may also be at higher risk of violence and exploitation. 


  • Incarcerated Individuals: Individuals who are currently or formerly incarcerated often face significant barriers to reintegrating into society, such as limited job prospects, housing discrimination, and loss of voting rights. They may also face challenges accessing healthcare and support services. 


  • Rural Communities: Rural areas often face unique challenges, including limited access to healthcare services, educational opportunities, transportation, and economic resources. They may also experience a lack of infrastructure and face isolation. 


  • Language Minority Communities: Immigrant or refugee communities with limited English proficiency may face barriers in accessing education, healthcare, employment, and social services. Language barriers can lead to exclusion and limited opportunities for advancement. 


  • Individuals with Addiction: People struggling with substance abuse disorders often face stigma, limited access to treatment, and barriers to employment and housing. They may lack the necessary support systems to recover and reintegrate into society. 


  • Individuals in Sex Work: Those engaged in sex work often face stigma, criminalization, and limited access to healthcare, legal protections, and support services. They may be vulnerable to exploitation and violence.


  • Veterans: Military veterans may face challenges such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), physical disabilities, mental health issues, homelessness, and difficulties transitioning to civilian life. They may also experience limited access to healthcare and employment opportunities.