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Drug Addiction and Crimes Among the Youth

The problem of drug consumption is widely spread among teenagers and young people, who are the main consumers of drugs. The drug addiction leads not only to significant physiological changes but it also changes the behavior of an individual, especially the behavior of teenagers. Moreover, drug addiction increases the risk of crimes committed by juveniles. In fact, the study is supposed to investigate factors that influence young people and lead them to drug consumption. In addition, the study aims at the revelation of effects of drug consumption on the behavior of juveniles. More specifically, the study will trace possible impact of the drug addiction on offensive and criminal behavior of juveniles. The hypothesis of the study is that the drug addiction can increase the risk of juvenile crimes because young people become more aggressive and they need money to purchase drugs but, as they cannot take them in the legal way, they are forced to commit crimes. In such a way, the study is supposed to reveal the close correlation between juvenile crimes and the drug addiction as well as the study is supposed to find out reasons why young people start consuming drugs and become drug addicts.

The current study will use survey design. The study will use both qualitative and quantitative methods of analysis.

Two independent variables will be used in the course of the study: age and drug addiction. Subjects of the study should be juveniles consuming drugs. In addition, the study may involve control group consisting of juveniles, who do not commit crimes to trace their criminal inclinations and models of behavior used by the control group and subjects of the study, who are drug addicts.

Types of crimes will be independent variables and reveal different types of crimes committed by juvenile drug addicts.

First, the study will involve the statistical analysis to find out the level of drug consumption among the youth and compare it to the general number of crimes committed by juveniles. Furthermore, the analysis of statistics should help to reveal the number of drug addicts among juvenile offenders. In such a way, it will be possible to reveal the existence of the correlation between the drug addiction and juvenile crimes. In addition, the study will focus on the types of crimes committed by juvenile drug offenders to reveal possible causes of crimes. For instance, if juvenile drug addicts commit property crimes aiming at stealing money or earning money in any other illegal way, then the study will support the hypothesis that juveniles commit crimes because they cannot purchase drugs, while their drug addiction forces them to commit crimes. The statistical analysis will help to reveal the correlation between the drug addiction and crimes committed by juveniles and get insights into the causes of crimes.

At the same time, the study will use qualitative methods of research, including interviews and questionnaires. The use of interviews and questionnaires will help to reveal causes of drug addiction among the youth and crimes committed by juveniles. In fact, interviews and questionnaires should involve juveniles, who consume drugs and who have already committed a crime. These subjects will comprise the core group of the study. The researcher should find out what causes of their drug addiction are through interviews and questionnaires. In this regard, the researcher should focus on social and psychological factors that could have contributed to the drug addiction of young people as well as their offensive behavior. At this point, the researcher should trace changes in the social behavior of young people and changes in their health.

However, interviews and questionnaires involving drug addicts and juvenile offenders are not enough to obtain all the information needed to reach the goals of the current study. In addition, the study should involve parents of the young people involved in the study, their educators, social workers and health care professionals. The involvement of these people in the study will help to obtain detailed information on behavioral changes that have occurred to juveniles since they have started to consume drugs. In addition, the researcher will be able to compare the behavior of the young people before they started consuming drugs and after. The interview of parents, educators, and social workers will help to understand causes why young people started consuming drugs and committed crimes. The involvement of health care professionals in the study will help to understand the mechanism of the development of drug addiction and behavioral changes in individuals caused by physiological and psychological factors.

Therefore, the study will be conducted in a large city, such as New York and involve about 55-65 participants, ten juvenile offenders, who are drug addicts, their parents (from ten to twenty persons), their educators (five persons), social workers (five persons) health care professionals (five persons) and control group that will involve ten young people. The participants of the study will be of different gender, social standing, but the target juvenile group will be of the same age.



Arrests of Juveniles for Drug Abuse Violations from 1994 to 2003. (2004). Retrieved on January 6, 2012 from http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/cius_04/special_reports/arrest_juveniles.html