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NCJ Number: 169419 Find in a Library
Title: Youth Employment and Delinquency: Reconsidering a Problematic Relationship
Journal: Criminology  Volume:35  Issue:4  Dated:(November 1997)  Pages:659-676
Author(s): M Ploeger
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 18
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Three possible explanations for the positive correlation between juvenile employment and juvenile delinquency were tested using data from the first three waves of the National Youth Survey.
Abstract: The first explanation is that differences in levels of delinquency between workers and nonworkers exist prior to employment. The second holds that working increases independence from parents and thereby reduces the controlling effect of parental influence. The third explanation rests on Sutherland's theory of differential association and holds that employment increases delinquent behavior by exposing adolescents to a wider network of peers, including delinquent peers. The data were collected through interviews conducted in 1977, 1978 and 1979. The interviews gathered information on events and behaviors during the year preceding the survey. The analysis revealed a positive association between employment and some forms of delinquency, especially alcohol and drug use. Selection bias explained much, but not all, of the association. No support existed for the parental influence explanation, but the remaining employment effect was explained by exposure to delinquent peers. Findings replicated and augmented previous research on youth employment and delinquency. Tables, footnotes, and 32 references (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Drug abuse causes; Employment-crime relationships; Juvenile delinquency factors; Juvenile delinquency prevention
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