Youth Crime


What is Youth Crime?

It's a crime commited by young offenders.

When I think about youth crime, the first question I would ask is: Why is the number of violent incidents between teenagers increasing?

Is poverty to blame? Or the bad parenting? Or maybe it's both?

Financial difficulties don't give much choice to parents, but to work longer hours just so that they can put food on the table. In the meantime, they're not exactly aware of their children's doings; they either don't have time or the capacity to understand.

Young people who live around council estates are the more vulnerable ones as they are more deprived of youth services. I think this because there aren't enough facilities to occupy them, such as: youth centres, sports arenas, lesiure centres, libraries etc. (I think this as I don't see many around where I live... most of them are closed because there is not enough funding to keep them)

Politition's attitude towards youth crime is not helping much either - blaming social media instead of real factors behind it.

The young people who live in poverty-stricken areas can easily misjudge the situation they live in and end up doing the wrong thing with the wrong type of people.

When they don't have the basic support they need, it's no use in telling young people that carrying a weapon or being part of a gang is not the right way to do things. Imagine one poor household; the mother is working long hours just to pay the rent and put food on the table as there is no father around. If the mother is working night as well as day, the child/children will not be supported emotionally as well as mentally and can easily get trapped in the wrong crowd. This is because there is no role model to show love, affection and support, showing them what is right and what is wrong.

The majority of young offenders come from abusive household; parents are drug addicts, alchoholics and - in some cases - themselves involved in crimminal activity/gang crime.

60% have some kind of difficulties such as speech, language and learning difficulties. They are angry, isolated, scared, lonely and feeling that there's no one to turn to.

The lack of discipline also has an negative effect on youngsters. So does poor parent -child interaction,bullying at the school or peer presssure.

Every week we hear sad things on the news; stabbings, gun crime etc. This is horrid and has to stop. So many young lives have been ruined...

In so many London estates, safety is the big issue; people feel unsafe because there isn't enough protection from the police force. "Funding crisis" left police forces inadequate.

What Can Be Done?

  • Crime Prevention Programs (CPP)
  • Training and Educational Programs (with individual approach)
  • Support for the Families
  • Not too hard punishments for minor crimes - that way they can be helped instead of pushed out (However, I'm a bit sceptical with this, because for some this can give the wrong idea; the idea that they can get away with things easily. In that case, maybe not too hard punishments for the first time round, but go harder on them, sort of, the next time if they do do it again...)
  • Job Opportunities (if they get released they have something to go to instead of the gang)
  • Youth Centres

I think these are (some) of the best options because they help the young offenders move away from "the dark side" (the gangs) and most of these encourage them to move on in life (getting job experiance will help them get jobs..) and, well, making their lives better I suppose.

Comments (30)

  • Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ Topical Talk
    08 Jan 2019

    Hi content_lemon,

    Excellent start to the issue. You've clearly researched youth crime and you've shown excellent curiosity by asking questions about why this is happening.

    We're really going to push members to provide evidence for claims they make. Can you provide evidence for the following things you've said in your post:
    1."The number of violent incidents between teenagers is increasing"
    2. "The majority of young offenders come from abusive households"
    3. Where did you find this fact: "60% have some kind of difficulties such as speech, language and learning difficulties".

    Questions for BNC Members
    Are there assumptions society makes about people which might not help the situation?
    Can BNC members spot any assumptions made in this post?
    Why do we need to be careful about making assumptions?

  • Elaine-logo-250x250.jpg victorious_snow | Elaine Primary School
    08 Jan 2019

    Some other reasons for young criminals are:

    social media
    This can sometimes turn wrong because of things like group chats- a way of gathering gangs OR just getting to know informations and to be inspired by others. And social isolation triggers youngsters for commit crime.
    Some movies can be inspirational to become a criminal and some actually shows the process and hoe everything works qite acurately.The best done to stop these are to split movies so up to a certain age could watch that film. However not many people follow that plus even if they do, older teenagers are the ones who's actually doing this.

    Troubled home life
    In this your point of bad home backround and less attentions on the children are invloved. But additionally if the child is poor, it motivates them to get rich by other children at school. This could happen just by looking at their category in money wise and comparing. Also when children don't do any school projects or bring things that they're supposed to because they don;t have much money.Another reason could be that they don't learn well and others tease and target one person wich again triggers them to defend or be mean to them back in much serious ways.As not everyone can not get rich all of a sudden, the only way is for parents to turn their attentions on the child and teach them goods and bads.

    In the UK, children under ten are not considered to have reached an age where they can be considered responsible for their crimes. But from 10 to 14 years of age can be convicted of a criminal offence if it is possible to prove that the child was aware that they were doing something that was seriously wrong. However from 14 onwards a child is fully responsible for their actions and their crime would be judged equally serious to an adult's even though there is difference in the types of sentence the young offenders receive.

    These are additional facts and other reasons for youngsters to commit crime and some solutions to stop this.

    1. Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ Topical Talk
      victorious_snow's comment 09 Jan 2019

      You're showing curiosity in your thinking by trying to explore reasons why young people might commit crimes

      Your social media argument is that social media makes it easier to fall into a gang. Am I right in this interpretation? Can you find any evidence for this?

      The weakest reasoning you have given is when you talk about poor children and things like school projects. Can you spot any assumptions in this part of your comment or find evidence to support this opinion?

      Check out the comments in this discussion to help:

    2. Boutcher-logo-250x250.jpg content_lemon | Boutcher C of E Primary School A | United Kingdom
      victorious_snow's comment 09 Jan 2019

      I agree completely with you! You showed really good reasons; a Well-awarded/deserves star!!

      1. Elaine-logo-250x250.jpg victorious_snow | Elaine Primary School
        content_lemon's comment 09 Jan 2019

        Thank you content_lemon

  • Boutcher-logo-250x250.jpg content_lemon | Boutcher C of E Primary School A | United Kingdom
    08 Jan 2019

    Thanks ever so much for the star!!
    I'll now explain:
    1. The Youth Justice Statistics, published in Jan. 2018, shows that 14,500 new entrants into the Youth Justice System. 40,000 proven offences involving possession of a knife or offensive weapon. Police statistics have shown that knife and gun-related crimes increased by 14% just last year.
    2. and 3. Children in the Youth Justice system are mostly drawn from the most disadvantaged families and communities and have multiple problems, such as the fact that 60% have significant speech, language or communication difficulties and that many have a history of abuse or bereavement.
    I got 1's info from Shout out London and 2 and 3 from
    Hope I did it right!!

    1. Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ Topical Talk
      content_lemon's comment 09 Jan 2019

      Well done content_lemon,

      You've used supporting evidence which makes the reasons we give stronger.

      Barnardos says that these children have 'multiple problems'. How can we be open-minded about the circumstance of someone linked to crime?

      1. Boutcher-logo-250x250.jpg content_lemon | Boutcher C of E Primary School A | United Kingdom
        Tiff @ Topical Talk's comment 09 Jan 2019

        To be open-minded, I think we should consider the youth’s feelings/situation and what position they are in, instead of judging them only by their offences. Another way to describe this is to try and help them to be decent and part of the right community; winning them back instead of pushing them away as this is societies/social problem. I think everybody - even if they have committed a crime - should have a second chance, but only if their willing to do something about it ( and also if their crime isn’t too serious - a minor crime)

  • The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg affable_weaver | The Ruth Gorse Academy | United Kingdom
    13 Jan 2019

    I completely agree with some of the points you made. One of them appealed to me the most- blaming social media. Studies have shown that being social reduces the chance of committing a crime by up to 65%. So shouldn't the social media be the last thing that comes to mind when looking for answers. Over the past years, the reputation of social media has gone down without thinking of the positives.

    In reply to [email protected]'s question 'why do we need to be careful about assumptions?' I think that a main reason of not assuming is that more likely than not the assumptions will not be correct.

    1. Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ Topical Talk
      affable_weaver's comment 14 Jan 2019

      Hi affable_weaver,

      Sometimes assumptions are right. For example, if I run the hot tap, I assume that the water will be hot to touch (based on my knowledge of how taps work and all the times I've run a hot tap before) and this is likely to be right. This assumption can save me from burning my hand. We make lots of little assumptions all the time and they often help us day-to-day.

      The trouble comes when we don't challenge the assumptions we make, especially about other people or things happening in society. For example, someone might make the assumption that all young people aren't interested in the news. We know this isn't true because of the BNC! But the consequences of someone making that assumption might be to exclude young people from conversations about the news.

      Can anyone think of any other examples of when assumptions can be good or bad?

  • The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg creative_sparrow | The Ruth Gorse Academy | United Kingdom
    15 Jan 2019

    I agree with most of the points made in this post content-lemon and yes poverty and family structure is a big part of this issue, however you state ‘Young people who live around council estates are the more vulnerable’. There’s a possible chance that it could be true however I think there are some people that might read it and make the assumption that all young people who live in council housing are all disadvantaged and therefore it’s these children that are most likely to go into youth crime. People might also assume that all people that live in or around council homes are the poorest in society which is not necessarily true.

    Some council estate actually have a wide demographic of people that live in these housings. A Guardian article (Jan 2016) revealed ‘In 1979, 42% of Britons’ lived in council homes. Today that figure is just under 8%’ Which is definitely a lot lower than I had expected. If you read this article it shows some council tenants are mixed-up demographics of people that come from all walks of life and they are not the poorest of society.

    I think if we are looking to help young kids at an early age to prevent them from going into crime there’s a chance we just focus all our resources to only helping one group of people living in one pocket of our society, whereas the problem could be far reaching and these kids could end up being ignored.

    1. Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ Topical Talk
      creative_sparrow's comment 16 Jan 2019

      Excellent research!

      Some might argue that with limited resources, society must target resources at only the most vulnerable. Would you agree with this?

      1. The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg creative_sparrow | The Ruth Gorse Academy | United Kingdom
        Tiff @ Topical Talk's comment 24 Jan 2019

        Yes the government have made many cuts to many services and therefore resources are very limited. The question of whether society must target resources at only the most vulnerable seem like a logical thing to do, however I have to question who is the most vulnerable sector of society? Where and how can we put in resources so we can effectively help them so young people don’t go into crime? Reading through peoples comments and posts have highlighted so many possible causes of youth crime. I’m sure many people will have widely different opinions to where resources should go and at this moment in time I feel further reading and research is needed so I can make better judgement on this matter.

    1. Crampton-logo-250x250.jpg unique_mouse | Crampton Primary School
      smart_parrot's comment 21 Jan 2019

      Youth crime is a type of crime which is caused by a young person.

  • Graveney-logo-250x250.jpg balanced_volcano | Graveney School | United Kingdom
    16 Jan 2019

    good research. However I think you should put more facts though.

    1. Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ Topical Talk
      balanced_volcano's comment 16 Jan 2019

      Excellent comment. Some of the wildfires across America and Europe this summer were started by people on purpose and had devastating effects.

      Your argument, especially around drug taking is very well explained.

      Could all of the things you have said around drugs also be true of alcohol, yet drinking alcohol is legal for over 18s. How does this fit in with your argument?

  • Crampton-logo-250x250.jpg encouraging_road | Crampton Primary School
    16 Jan 2019

    At the moment i do not know that much about this topic and i am exited to start it. Even though i know somthing of this topic i am apalled at how little i know i only knew of a few of those newspapers in the introduction.

  • Cowes-logo-250x250.jpg astounding_currant | Cowes Enterprise College A | United Kingdom
    19 Jan 2019

    To content Lemon,
    I think your post was very useful and helped me understand youth crime but I think you could maybe include some links and some more of your opinions to make your post amazing!
    Still, your post was a big help to me and I thank you very much
    Yours faithfully

  • Highdown-logo-250x250.jpg loving_quince | Highdown School
    21 Jan 2019

    I think that teenagers with bad parenting usually think that they are 'cool'. I think that act like this because they want to be like their parents who commit illegal crimes like murder, robbery and dealing drugs. Then they end up joining a gang and getting used to. Meanwhile, the parents don't do anything because they think that it is ok. Eventually they end up getting used to it and start properly murdering people. That's usually when they get arrested.

    1. Olivia-Avatar.jpg Olivia @ Topical Talk
      loving_quince's comment 21 Jan 2019

      Have you made any assumptions in this comment, about the parents, children or both parties?

      1. Highdown-logo-250x250.jpg loving_quince | Highdown School
        Olivia @ Topical Talk's comment 21 Jan 2019

        Yes I have because when I think of gangs and young offenders I usually think of kids either copying their parents or joining with their friends who do it. Personally I think it's the same process for parents

  • Ormiston-Bushfield-logo-250x250.jpg spirited_penguin | Ormiston Bushfield Academy A | United Kingdom
    21 Jan 2019

    Another reason why youth crime is so big is because of peer pressure. Apparently it's now the 'cool' thing to do to get into fights, or to join gangs. You are now 'popular' and accepted into society. This is actually in my opinion the main reason why youth crime has increased. People at your school, or around you, persuade you to do things by saying that you'll be 'more liked' and they'll 'reward you' and other factors like that. Some young people, for example, could be A* students, and then be influenced into being naughty and not concentrated in class by other people who think it's funny. I think this is another reason why youth crime is so big also, as these people who are persuading people could be in gangs. Gangs could tell you to do something that you don't originally want to do, but then you do it if they threaten you if you don't. These are steps if you do it:

    -You could get arrested by the police for criminal damage or other reasons
    -That will then be on your criminal record.
    -Most jobs don’t employ people who have a criminal history
    -This could even encourage you to commit more crime.

    This is why I think that peer pressure is the main reason why youth crime is so big.

    1. Highdown-logo-250x250.jpg loving_quince | Highdown School
      spirited_penguin's comment 21 Jan 2019

      Yes. Once peopled are influenced into criminal activity then they share it with others then they share it with more people and it goes on and on etc. Say someone robs a house and then brings the money to the 'gang headquarters' , then they would then get some of the money. That is maybe why people who are poor commit crimes so that they can earn money to support their family.

      That is one of the reasons that burglary happens so much-so that they can earn money.

  • Crampton-logo-250x250.jpg unique_mouse | Crampton Primary School
    21 Jan 2019

    Maybe another reason is that children play WAY too many games. e.g: Fortnite

  • Crampton-logo-250x250.jpg unique_mouse | Crampton Primary School
    21 Jan 2019

    Which cause depression and violence.

  • Graveney-logo-250x250.jpg balanced_volcano | Graveney School | United Kingdom
    23 Jan 2019

    Good research .However you need more facts to base your idea.

    1. Boutcher-logo-250x250.jpg content_lemon | Boutcher C of E Primary School A | United Kingdom
      balanced_volcano's comment 23 Jan 2019

      What do you mean by facts? I'm pretty sure I've got a reasonable amount of facts here; why do you think not? Please elaborate!

  • Boutcher-logo-250x250.jpg steady_skill | Boutcher C of E Primary School A | United Kingdom
    28 Jan 2019

    I learnt today that one reason for youth crime may be that lots of youth centers are closing from lack of funding, this means that many young people are joining gangs for the simple reason that they do not "have enough to do"

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