Violence Against Children and Youth – Press Room

Gang homicides often occur in public and involve firearms, but are less likely to involve drugs or other crimes than generally believed by the public, according to a report released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Gang homicides frequently involve youth as victims and are often retaliatory reactions to gang conflict.

First study on gang homicides using CDC’s National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS)

This report analyzed 2003-2008 data from large cities within 17 NVDRS states. Of those, five cities met the criteria for having high levels of gang homicide: Los Angeles, California; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Long Beach, California; Oakland, California; and Newark, New Jersey.

Photo of teens walking on the street

Other key findings in the report include:

This report underscores the need to help youth learn how to diffuse and resolve conflict without resorting to violence and to prevent them from becoming involved in gangs in the first place.

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What is CDC doing to prevent these forms of violence?


On November 15, 2011, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS) 2010 Additional Info. One of CDC’s newest public health surveillance systems, NISVS is designed to better describe and monitor the magnitude of sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence victimization in the United States. It is the first survey of its kind to provide simultaneous national and state-level prevalence estimates of violence for all states.

The findings in this report underscore the importance of prevention efforts. NISVS provides data that can help inform policies and programs aimed at the specific needs of state and national organizations and also a way to monitor and measure these efforts.

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Teen Death

More than 16,375 teens, from ages 12 to 19, die each year. The tragedy is that nearly 75% of all teen deaths are attributable to unintentional and violence-related injuries and are considered preventable. According to a newly released CDC National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) report Mortality Among Teenagers 12 – 19: United States 1999 – 2006, the top three causes of teen deaths are:

The Injury Center is committed to preventing injuries and violence in at-risk groups, like teens. We are working to translate our scientific discoveries into effective programs that can improve the health and safety of people in all communities. Find out more about our research and prevention activities in the following areas:

Dating Matters

It is important to begin to teach teens about safe and respectful relationships early – before they begin to date. Violence is a growing public health issue. In a nationwide CDC survey of students in grades 9-12, nearly one in 10 students reported being hit or physically hurt on purpose by a boyfriend or girlfriend at least once in the past 12 months.

Dating Matters: Understanding Teen Dating Violence Prevention is a 60-minute, interactive training designed to help educators, youth-serving organizations, and others working with teens understand the risk factors and warning signs associated with teen dating violence.

Developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in partnership with Liz Claiborne Inc., Dating Matters also will highlight the importance of promoting healthy relationships.

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Choose Respect

One out of 11 teens report being hit or physically hurt on purpose by a boyfriend or girlfriend at least once in the past 12 months. Even something like putting someone down or trying to change how they dress can be a sign of an unhealthy relationship. That’s why adults, especially parents, need to talk to kids and teens about the importance of developing healthy, respectful relationships.

Girl holding globe

Violence is a global challenge and a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. Sexual violence against girls is a substantial health and human rights problem throughout the world, yet there is limited data documenting the magnitude and regionally-specific components of the problem.

CDC collaborates with a variety of international agencies and institutions to shape global health policies and to develop, implement, and evaluate programs.