Essay On Youth Delinquency

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Youth delinquent behaviors have been a consistent problem facing families in the recent decades. These behaviors cause tension within family systems and often result in serious consequences not only for the youth exhibiting behaviors, but also for the entirety of the youth’s family. Recent research has provided several different effective treatment and prevention techniques for youth delinquency. Multisystemic therapy, a therapy focusing on the importance of external factors as cause for youth delinquent behaviors has become among the leading intervention strategies for delinquency in the United States. Multisystemic therapy (MST) is an effective treatment for youth delinquency, because it has proven long-term success, is attempting to incorporate…show more content…
Recent research has shown that MST has a significant long lasting effect on the individuals who participated in treatment (Sawyer & Borduin, 2011). In a 4-year follow up study, a significant reduction for continued delinquent behavior was found for delinquent youth treated with MST (Sawyer & Borduin, 2011). For youth participating in individual therapy, “the odds of recidivism for any felony offense during follow-up were approximately twice as high” as youth involved with MST (Sawyer & Borduin, 2011, p. 647). This significant difference between the long-term outcomes of individual therapy and MST points to MST being the superior treatment strategy. Through various studies, a pattern of substantially lower recidivism rates amongst juvenile offenders treated by MST has emerged (Timmons-Mitchell, Bender, Kishna, & Mitchell, 2006). A study conducted in 1992 showed a 42% decrease in arrests, and following studies from 1995 and1997 subsequently found a 73% reduction in arrest rates and a 26% decrease in recidivism for individuals treated with MST (Timmons-Mitchell et al., 2006). These results are cohesive and confirm the success of groundbreaking strategies utilized in MST treatment…show more content…
This aspect of MST is an important component to the success of the treatment (Tighe et al., 2012). Unlike many other interventions that focus simply on correcting the youth’s current behaviors, MST “uses a social-ecological approach and aims to improve the young person’s behavior and to prevent reoffending by affecting the multiple systems that surround the young person” (Tighe et al., 2012, p.189). This concept differentiates MST from other leading treatments for delinquent behaviors and has been formed as the result of years of compiled research (Walters, 2016). MST is implemented using research-based treatment options and is a community-based, family-driven treatment that views the client as the entire ecology of the youth (Walters, 2016). The practices present in MST that are based on the research of family systems theory and the ecological model have propelled MST to be a leading treatment method (Walters, 2016). The research of these two theories has been central to the development of MST and is likely one of the largest factors in the emerging success of this therapy (Walters,
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