The Theories of Risk & Protective Factors Among Youth Offenders

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(CRIM 105 South Bend)
Connie Wawrzyniak

The Theories Of Risk And Protective Factors Among Youth Offenders

In today’s world there are many risk factors that play into a youths life. A risk factor approach assumes that there are multiple, and overlapping, risk factors in an individuals background that lead to adverse outcomes. Examples of risk factors which may lead to a youth being a offender are non-attendance at school, school failure, substance abuse, being abused, unemployment, and living in a single-parent household. Not all children exposed to risk factors become involved in crime. There are protective factors that shield a youth from risk, those would be academic success, regular school attendance, remaing drug free, being employed, and being raised in a loving, functional, non-abusive family setting.

There are a multiplicity of risk and protective factors. Ideally, for each risk factor there is at least one protective factor.There are many communities in the United States that are continually assessing the risks to which their youth are exposed. I believe we all know what causes a youth to commit a crime, that has been determined through studies, but is I believe that constructing a theory on this is demanding. If we know the theories one might be able to better understand criminal bahavior in America’s youth.

One could argue the theory that drugs are corrupting the minds of are young adults. Could this be the reason for our youth having so many risk factors? In the year 2006 a survey was gathered from over 50,000 students in more than 400 schools across the nation about life-time use, past-year use, past-month use, and daily use of drugs , alcohol. (Schmalleger,2009,p.533)

Mininizing risk factors and maximizing protective factors throughout the development cycle from birth through adolesence can give the youth a better chance to lead productive, crime-free lives

Early intervention programs and services for juveniles...
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