ERIC Number: EJ837672
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Examining the Impact of Gender, Race/Ethnicity, and Family Factors on Mental Health Issues in a Sample of Court-Involved Youth
Gavazzi, Stephen M.; Bostic, Jennifer M.; Lim, Ji-Young; Yarcheck, Courtney M.
Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, v34 n3 p353-368 Jul 2008
Faced with anywhere between one half and two thirds of its youth having a diagnosable mental illness, the identification and treatment of mental health concerns is a critically important endeavor for professionals working with youth who have contact with the juvenile justice system. In addition, the literature suggests that factors related to both the family and to the gender of the adolescent must be incorporated into any approach to assessment and intervention within this special population. Further, prior work that has documented the interaction of gender and family issues with adolescent race/ethnicity warrants further empirical attention, as does the intermediary role that the family may play in the development of both internalizing and externalizing behaviors. The present study extends this literature by examining factors related to gender, race/ethnicity, family factors, and mental health issues in a sample of 2,549 Caucasian and African American youth coming to the attention of juvenile courts. Multivariate analysis of variance results indicated significant main effects for gender and race/ethnicity, as well as a significant gender x race/ethnicity interaction for the family and externalizing variables. A multiple group structural equation modeling procedure was employed in order to test the hypothesis that family environment mediates the relationship between gender and mental health problems, as well as to test for potential differences in these relationships as a function of race/ethnicity. Results indicated support for the mediation model in the sample of African American youth but not in the sample of Caucasian youth.
Descriptors: Mental Health, Adolescents, Juvenile Justice, Family Influence, Gender Differences, Ethnicity, Racial Factors, Whites, African Americans, Multivariate Analysis, Family Environment, Structural Equation Models
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
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