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Prevention: Juveniles as Potential Offenders - Community

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationCrime and Criminal LawPrevention: Juveniles as Potential Offenders - Individualized Treatments, Early Intervention, Older Youths, Community, Juvenile Justice, Evaluation, Conclusion

Community

Some prevention programs operate at the neighborhood or community level, such as area projects (Shaw and McKay) and detached gang workers (Dixon and Wright). The Chicago Area Project (CAP), which began in 1932, was the first effort to organize local self-help groups in high-delinquency areas (Shaw and McKay). Although there is some evidence that CAP and other community-based programs may reduce delinquency rates (Schlossman et al. 1984), these programs have yet to be rigorously evaluated.

The Gautreaux project is also a neighborhood prevention program, although it involves moving families from low-income into urban or suburban middle-income neighborhoods rather than attempting to change low-income neighborhoods themselves. Compared to the urban movers, children of families moving into suburbs were more likely to complete high school, attend college, and work full-time (Duncan and Raudenbush). A similar intervention, the Moving to Opportunity (MTO) experiment, examined arrest outcomes. Boys whose families had moved from low-income to middle-income neighborhoods had 17 percent fewer arrests for violent offenses and 13 percent fewer "other" arrests as compared to a control group (Duncan and Raudenbush). Because of neighborhood differences in enforcement, however, these evaluations must be replicated with self-reported delinquency measures before firm conclusions can be drawn.

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