Youth Violence Essay

Adverse childhood experiences, like youth violence, are associated with negative health and well-being outcomes across the life course.

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*7 As incidents of violence involving youth have increased, public demands for effective measures aimed at curtailing youth violence have grown commensurately.

At the state and national levels, the response from policymakers to the surge in youth violence has primarily come in the form of "get tough" measures, including substantial increases in funding for law enforcement and corrections, and increased penalties for juveniles convicted of offenses involving the use of violence.

Youth violence negatively impacts perceived and actual safety, participation in community events, youth’s school attendance, and viability of businesses.

Addressing the short- and long-term consequences of violence strains community resources and limits the resources that states and communities have to address other needs and goals.

Although the media, namely in the form of television, has an impact on young people exhibiting violent behavior, the home environment of these young people must also be considered a primary factor in promoting hostility.

This influence takes into account a child’s acquisition of values learned from his/her parents, the behavior of his/her parents, and abuse of a child by a parent.

As the number of violent crimes committed by young people under the age of 18 has increased in recent years, the problem of youth violence has been elevated to an issue of national concern.

Since 1980, the number of violent crimes committed by juveniles has climbed steadily; between 19, the number of juveniles arrested for violent offenses increased by nearly 68%.

*4 For every category of violent crime, young people between the ages of 12 and 18 are more likely to be victims than any other age group.

*5 The rate of victimization is highest among minority youth-- African-American youth are six times more likely to be victims of homicide than their white counterparts *6 -- but for all young people, homicide is surpassed only by suicide as the leading cause of death.

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