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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

Emory: Study Examines African American Youths’ Perceptions of Community Violence and Their Recommendations for Mitigating Negative Impacts

Researchers at the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health and University of Missouri Kansas City School of Medicine in partnership with community partner Youth Ambassadors recently conducted a qualitative study on community violence that examined the lived perspectives of African American youth and their recommendations for mitigating the negative impact of community violence. The authors’ findings were recently published in the  October issue of Health Affairs, a themed issue about violence and health. Dr. Briana Woods-Jaeger, was first author on the paper.

The researchers conducted five focus groups composed of 39 youths (average age of 16) representing income-disadvantaged neighborhoods in urban Kansas City, Missouri. The participants completed demographic questionnaires and were engaged in focus group discussions surrounding the topic of community violence. Two recurring themes that emerged from the focus group discussions were discontent with the inadequate response to community violence (by school officials, law enforcement, etc.) and racial discrimination.

Participants provided concrete, actionable steps for the community to take, which included:

The qualitative study was phase one of a larger project that includes a community-wide survey and development of a cross-sector intervention.

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