STATCAST – Week of April 8, 2019

National Youth Violence Prevention Week and National Autism Awareness Month


This week is National Youth Violence Prevention Week. Homicide is the 3rd leading cause of death among children and youth ages 5 to 19. In 2017, there were 2,470 homicides in this age group. Three out of four of those homicides were among teens ages 15 to 19. The homicide rate among teens ages 15-19 is 8.7 homicides per 100,000 population, which is 40% higher than the overall homicide rate in the U.S. of 6.2.

April is also National Autism Awareness Month. NCHS has published a variety of data on autism over the past several years, including in September of 2018, when data from the National Health Interview Survey showed that 2.5 percent of school-aged American children ages 5 to 17 had an autism spectrum disorder. The same study showed that 9 percent of these children with autism missed 15 or more days of school over the past year, which the study defined as “chronic school absenteeism.”

Autism is more prevalent among boys than girls. An estimated 3.63% of boys have an autism spectrum disorder, according to 2014 to 2016 data, compared to 1.25% of girls. The condition is more likely to be diagnosed in children ages 8 to 12 than in children ages 3 to 7 or older children ages 13 to 17.