Youth violence declining in UK

December 4, 2012, University of Hertfordshire

Physical violence among young people is on the decline overall in nearly thirty countries including the UK, according to a new international study involving researchers from the University of Hertfordshire.

Youth violence is a major concern in most countries with physical fighting being the most common sign of such violence. The study's findings show that investment in programmes and other support networks do make a difference for the world's youth.

Professor Fiona Brooks, at the University of Hertfordshire's Centre for Research in Primary and Community Care, said: "Over the last decade in the UK, a wide range of programmes have been made available to and educators to reduce violence and associated triggers.

"These programmes have proven effective and have helped to lower the rates of violence in the UK. Such programmes include developing life skills in children and young people, working with young people who are potentially violent, as well as reducing the availability and misuse of alcohol."

In addition, many schools across England have signed up to the UK's Rights Respecting Schools Award. This is a UK-wide initiative which helps schools to use the United Nations Convention on the at the heart of a school's values. It teaches the rights and respects in all school relationships: not only those between teachers and their , but also between pupils. Evidence suggests that this programme may reduce bullying and also help create a more supportive school culture which helps protect young people from developing a tendency towards violence.

Although violence among young people dropped in the UK and the majority of countries in the study, Ukraine, Latvia and Greece were the only countries that did not show a reduction in among young people. This could be a reflection of the instability and turmoil these countries have experienced in recent years.

A variety of factors predict the occurrence of violence among young people according to the study. These include:

  • being born male
  • living in low income countries
  • living in more violent cultures with higher murder rates
  • engaging in risk-taking behaviours including tobacco, marijuana and/or alcohol use
  • victimisation by bullying.
The in-depth results from the study will influence decisions in directing resources to these adolescent groups which are at risk of using violence. Strategies include family-based training, minimising violence in public media, and school-based anti-violence programs and counselling.

Explore further: Expert panel calls for new research approach to prevent youth violence

More information: www.pediatrics.org/cgi/doi/10.1542/peds.2012-1614

Related Stories

Expert panel calls for new research approach to prevent youth violence

July 17, 2012
Most research into youth violence has sought to understand the risk factors that increase the likelihood of violence. Now, a federal panel has called for a new research approach to identify the protective factors that would ...

Know a teen hurt by a date? Someone else has been hurting them too, research finds

February 13, 2012
Teen victims of dating violence are overwhelmingly more likely to have been victims of other forms of violence, such as sexual violence and child abuse, according to new research from the University of New Hampshire Crimes ...

Study challenges assumptions on wartime sexual violence

October 10, 2012
A new study by the Simon Fraser University-based Human Security Report Project (HSRP), released today at the United Nations headquarters in New York, finds that there is no compelling evidence to support a host of widely ...

American schools unable to handle teen dating violence, study finds

July 23, 2012
(Phys.org) -- Preventing and addressing adolescent dating violence is not a high priority for most American schools, even though the majority of counselors have assisted survivors, says a new study from Ball State University.

Recommended for you

Baby brains help infants figure it out before they try it out

January 17, 2018
Babies often amaze their parents when they seemingly learn new skills overnight—how to walk, for example. But their brains were probably prepping for those tasks long before their first steps occurred, according to researchers.

NeuroNext biomarker study explores natural history of infantile-onset SMA

January 9, 2018
Research led by The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center to define the natural history of infantile-onset spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) has been "critical" to accelerate the development of effective therapies and hasten ...

No link between childhood lead levels, later criminality

December 27, 2017
(HealthDay)— Exposure to higher levels of lead during early childhood can affect neurological development—but does that mean affected kids are doomed to delinquency?

Early puberty in girls may take mental health toll

December 26, 2017
(HealthDay)—A girl who gets her first menstrual period early in life—possibly as young as 7—has a greater risk for developing depression and antisocial behaviors that last at least into her 20s, a new study suggests.

Technology not taking over children's lives despite screen-time increase

December 21, 2017
With children spending increasing amounts of time on screen-based devices, there is a common perception that technology is taking over their lives, to the detriment and exclusion of other activities. However, new Oxford University ...

Higher blood sugar in early pregnancy raises baby's heart-defect risk

December 15, 2017
Higher blood sugar early in pregnancy raises the baby's risk of a congenital heart defect, even among mothers who do not have diabetes, according to a study led by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.