Article exploring “The impact of neighborhood disorganization on neighborhood exposure to violence, trauma symptoms, and social relationships among at-risk youth” available for free for limited time

A Begun Center research team was recently invited to write an article appearing in a special issue of the journal Social Science & Medicine, an issue entitled, “Violence, Health, and Social Justice: South-North Collaborations and Institutional Challenges”.

Led by Research Associate Fred Butcher, Ph.D, and co-authored with Begun team members Dan Flannery and Jeff Kretschmar and former Begun Research Associate Joe Galanek, Social Science & Medicinethe article, entitled “The impact of neighborhood disorganization on neighborhood exposure to violence, trauma symptoms, and social relationships among at-risk youth”, explores the impact on youth in highly-disadvantaged neighborhoods who are exposed to violence at high rates and have trauma symptoms as a result.

“The general argument here and what makes the article novel,” says Dr. Butcher, “is that most people think of social relationships as a protective factor for exposure to violence. So when kids are exposed to trauma, it is less likely to impact their mental health functioning if they have supportive relationships in place. “However, we argue that kids with trauma have a difficult time developing social relationships because of their trauma and we talk about the theoretical impact that conceptualizing the model in this way on trauma-informed care.”

From the Article Abstract
Previous research has demonstrated that exposure to violence (ETV) is a serious concern across the north-south socioeconomic divide. While studies have found that social support is a protective factor for youth exposed to violence and trauma, little is known about the impact of trauma symptoms on forming and maintaining social relationships which are key to accessing a vital social resource that fosters resilience in youth experiencing trauma symptomatology.

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