This literature review concerning the topic of African American youth violence addresses the following areas relevant to this study: youth violence research and prevalence, assessment of related factors, prevention and treatment of youth violence; and summary and conclusion.
Youth Violence Research and Prevalence
Brener, Lowry,áBarrios, Simon, and Eaton (2005) reported on violence-related behaviors among U.S. high school students from 1991 to 2003.á These authors stated that homicide and suicide are present in one-fourth of deaths in individual's ages 10 to 24 years. National health objectives for 2010 include the reduction of prevalence of physical fighting in adolescents and a reduction of the prevalence of carrying a weapon at school in this group. The center for Disease Control and Prevention reported that according to the youth Risk Behavior Survey, violence-related behaviors did decrease from 1991 to 2003, however students were more likely to miss school due to feeling unsafe at school. A 2003 survey determined that one in ten high school students were threatened at school, indicating the need to improve safety in this environment. Zhang and Johnsoná(2005) reported an example of this violence, noting the prevalence of violent behaviors on school property, in Mississippi public high schools from 1993 to 2003. Data from the Mississippi Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System, which includes a sample of 9,058 high school students, was analyzed. Findings showed that while violence-related behaviors at school decreased during this time period, reports of threats or injuries with a weapon on schools grounds did not decrease. The authors stated that these trends are taking place across the nation.
Hackett (2001) stated that youth violence problems are a result of the breakdown of the family structure, a lack of teacher support in elementary and middle schools, a trend to undervalue children and African American an...