Rise of Juvenile Delinquency in War
Great Britain during its first year of war experienced an increase of more than 40 per cent in juvenile delinquency. The increase in this country during the first year of American participation in the war was more moderate, but it was still sufficient to create alarm over an apparent increase in criminal tendencies among American youth.
Available statistics indicate an increase of about 10 per cent in arrests of youthful offenders in the largest cities, New York and Chicago, during 1942; increases ranging up to 33 per cent in middle-sized cities that have become centres of war production; and increases ranging up to 100 per cent or more in small communities situated near army camps and naval training centres or near fast-growing industrial establishments. On the other hand, there have been marked declines in j uvenile delinquency in areas which have been little touched by war activities, other than the draining off of young men to the military forces and of teen-age youths of both sexes to centres of war production.
Two striking facts have been brought out in all recent studies of juvenile delinquency. The first is that there has been a more rapid rate of increase in offenses among teenage girls than among teen-age boys; this has been true in all other warring countries as well as the United States. The second is that in this country the increase in delinquency rates among white youths has been more rapid than the increase among Negro youths.