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Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Street Life: Aggravated and Sexual Assaults Among Homeless and Runaway Adolescents
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This article examines aggravated and sexual assaults among 240 runaway and homeless adolescents in Des Moines, Iowa. Unlike previous research studies on homeless and runaway adolescents that used small samples, limiting these samples to persons in youth shelters, and/or used clinical data, the current study contacted homeless and runaway adolescents where they congregated and lived. A social learning approach to victimization was used to show that deviant behavior among adolescents directly relates to coercive, aggressive, harsh, and abusive parental techniques. The results partially support the proposition that homeless and runaway adolescents are at risk of life-threatening situations on the streets (aggravated and sexual assaults) due to aggressive and abusive parents. In addition, there are strong indications that the street life situations of homeless and runaway adolescents have significant impacts on the probability that they will become assaulted aggravatedly and/or sexually. (Author)
Youth & Society