Exposure to violence among urban school-aged children: Is it only on television?

Oscar H. Purugganan, Ruth E.K. Stein, Ellen Johnson Silver, Blanche S. Benenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective. To measure exposure to different types of violence among school-aged children in a primary care setting. Design. Child interviews using an instrument measuring 4 types of exposure (direct victimization, witnessing, hearing reports, media). Violent acts measured include being beaten up, chased/threatened, robbed/ mugged, stabbed/shot, killed. Setting. Pediatric primary care clinic of large urban hospital. Patients. Convenience sample of 175 children 9-12 years old and their mothers. A total of 53% of the children were boys, 55% were Hispanic, and 40% received public assistance. Results. All children had been exposed to media violence. A total of 97% (170/175) had been exposed to more direct forms of violence; 77% had witnessed violence involving strangers; 49% had witnessed violence involving familiar persons; 49% had been direct victims; and 31% had witnessed someone being shot, stabbed, or killed. Exposure to violence was significantly associated with being male. Conclusion. Most school-aged children who visited a pediatric primary care clinic of a large urban hospital had directly experienced violence as witnesses and/or victims.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)949-953
Number of pages5
JournalPediatrics
Volume106
Issue number4 II SUPPL.
Publication statusPublished - Oct 24 2000

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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