Introduction: Adolescent participation in violence-prevention programming is critical in addressing the nation's elevated rates of youth fighting and violence. However, little is known about the secular trends and correlates of violence-prevention program participation in the U.S. Using national data, the authors examined the year-by-year trends and correlates of participation among American adolescents over a 15-year span. Methods: National trend data (2002–2016) were analyzed on non-Hispanic black/African American (n=35,216), Hispanic (n=45,780), and non-Hispanic white (n=153,087) youth aged 12–17years from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health in 2018. Consistent with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's trend analysis guidelines, the authors conducted logistic regression analyses with survey year specified as an independent variable and youth violence-prevention program participation specified as the dependent variable, while controlling for sociodemographic factors and other key correlates. Results: Youth participation in violence-prevention programs decreased significantly from 16.7% in 2002 to 11.7% in 2016, a 29% relative decrease in participation. A significant declining trend in participation over time was found across all sociodemographic subgroups examined and among youth reporting the use of violence and no use of violence in the past year. Participation among black/African American youth was significantly greater than Hispanic youth who, in turn, had significantlyhigher participation rates than white youth. Conclusions: Youth participation in violence-prevention programming has decreased in recent years, with particularly large declines observed among younger adolescents (aged 12–14 years), youth in higher-income households, and youth reporting no past-year use of violence.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health