Adolescents in Public Housing

Adolescents in Public Housing: Addressing Psychological and Behavioral Health

Von E. Nebbitt
Copyright Date: 2015
Pages: 256
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.7312/nebb14858
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  • Book Info
    Adolescents in Public Housing
    Book Description:

    Adolescents in Public Housingincorporates data from multiple public-housing sites in large U.S. cities to shine much-needed light on African American youth living in non-HOPE VI public-housing neighborhoods. With findings grounded in research, the book gives practitioners and policy makers a solid grasp of the attitudes toward deviance, alcohol and drug abuse, and depressive symptoms characterizing these communities, and links them explicitly to gaps in policy and practice. A long-overdue study of a system affecting not just a minority of children but the American public at large,Adolescents in Public Housinginitiates new, productive paths for research on this vulnerable population and contributes to preventive interventions that may improve the lives of affected youth.

    eISBN: 978-0-231-51996-0
    Subjects: Sociology, Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. FOREWORD
    (pp. xi-xiv)
    Cheryl A. Lovell

    I HAVE SPENT NEARLY TWENTY YEARS working in public housing, mostly as executive director of the St. Louis Housing Authority. Over the years there have been many changes in public housing in my city. Gone are the derelict, isolated warehouses of poverty that once dominated the landscape. They have been replaced with the mixed-income communities that blend with the surrounding neighborhoods and reestablish the traditional street patterns. These communities reconstruct neighborhoods and reconnect residents with the surrounding communities. They attempt to reduce the isolation of public housing communities by breaking down the physical barriers of isolation that shout to all,...

  5. PREFACE
    (pp. xv-xx)
  6. PART ONE Theoretical Underpinnings and Methodology
    • 1 Introduction: CONTEXT MATTERS
      (pp. 3-18)
      VON E. NEBBITT

      PUBLIC HOUSING IS A FEDERAL program started by the U.S. Housing Act of 1937, which provided public financing for low-cost public housing. Initially, public housing was developed to meet the housing needs of white middle-class families affected by the Great Depression; however, it quickly transitioned into housing for poor racial minorities (Atlas & Dreier 1992; Bauman 1987; Marcuse 1995; Goetz 2003). The transition was due, in part, to the Housing Act of 1949 and a national trend toward urban renewal. After the passage of the Housing Act of 1949, approximately 90 percent of public housing subsidized by the U.S. Housing...

    • 2 A Framework for Inquiry into Neighborhood-Institutional Relationships Related to Public Housing and Adolescent Development
      (pp. 19-34)
      ODIS JOHNSON JR. and VON E. NEBBITT

      INSTITUTIONS SUCH AS PUBLIC HOUSING developments have ecological structures, features, and functions similar to those that define neighborhoods. Like neighborhoods, they possess a structural composition, have a built environment, and inspire social processes. They constitute represented communities, places of social organization, and mechanisms that bring about social outcomes. The major question addressed in this chapter extends from this reality and requires us to conceptualize these two ecological contexts and their interrelated components, as well as how they work in tandem to determine the developmental outcomes of underrepresented children.

      The importance of the question extends from the vast differences in the...

    • 3 An Integrated Model of Adolescent Development in Public Housing Neighborhoods
      (pp. 35-50)
      VON E. NEBBITT, KATHY SANDERS-PHILLIPS and LISA R. RAWLINGS

      PUBLIC HOUSING CAN BE BROADLY defined as government-owned housing for low-income individuals and families (HUDUSER 2009). With the exception of the Mutual Ownership Defense Housing Division of the Federal Works Agency, the slum clearance polices and American’s legacy of residential segregation created the context for location-based public housing neighborhoods that exists in the United States today (Goetz 2003). Slum clearance ensured that public housing neighborhoods would be built in areas of extreme poverty, and residential segregation ensured the overrepresentation of nonwhite families in public housing. Currently, 70 percent of the public housing neighborhoods in metropolitan areas are located in poor...

  7. PART TWO Empirical Section
    • 4 Methodology and Procedures
      (pp. 53-80)
      VON E. NEBBITT, TAQI M. TIRMAZI and TAREK ZIDAN

      FROM SPRING 2005 THROUGH SUMMER 2008, cross-sectional data were collected from 898 African American adolescents living in public housing developments in four large U.S. cities: New York City (Queens), North Philadelphia, St. Louis, and Washington, DC. The data we collected and used for analyses in the following chapters are all self-reported and obtained using standardized instruments.

      The purpose of this chapter is to explain the methodology and procedures used to conduct this study. The chapter is presented in four sections. First, we describe the process for community engagement. Second, we explain the research protocol and provide a brief description of...

    • 5 Modeling Latent Profiles of Efficacious Beliefs and Attitudes Toward Deviance
      (pp. 81-94)
      VON E. NEBBITT and AJITA M. ROBINSON

      SINCE ITS INCEPTION, THE CENTRAL theme of research on low-income urban African American youth has been deficits and pathologies, with a relative exclusion of capacities and strengths. In 1999, Zimmerman, Ramirez-Valles, and Maton noted that much more is known about the causes of psychopathology among African American youth than about how and why some of these youth become well-functioning citizens. A review of empirical papers suggests that research, with few exceptions, has not deviated from this trend. One exception has been the proliferation of studies on self-efficacy and its effects on reducing risk behavior (Goh, Primavera, & Bartalini 1996; Jonson-Reid...

    • 6 The Social Ecology of Adolescent Alcohol and Drug Use
      (pp. 95-108)
      MICHAEL G. VAUGHN, MARGARET LOMBE, STEPHEN TRIPODI and VON E. NEBBITT

      ADOLESCENCE IS A STAGE OF development when young people strive for group identity and subsequently explore the larger social world (Erikson 1950; Giordano 2003). Accordingly, exposure to a variety of risks, such as violence and substance use, tends to increase during adolescence compared to childhood. For example, from 1993 through 2003, juveniles ages 12 to 17 years were approximately 2.5 times more likely than adults (i.e., ages 18 and older) to be victims of nonfatal violence (Lawrence & Hemmens 2008; Snyder & Sickmund 2006). Rates of exposure to community violence are far higher for African American adolescents than other racial...

    • 7 The Relationship Between Neighborhood Risk and Adolescent Health-Risk Behaviors: A FOCUS ON ADOLESCENT DEPRESSIVE SYMPTOMS
      (pp. 109-122)
      SHARON F. LAMBERT, CRYSTAL L. BARKSDALE and VON E. NEBBITT

      IT HAS BEEN WELL ESTABLISHED that high-risk behaviors among adolescents, such as substance use and unprotected or early sexual behavior, place adolescents at increased risk for several negative outcomes. Although current rates of adolescent alcohol and substance use are significantly lower than the peak rates in the 1970s and 1980s (Mulye et al. 2009), trends remain troubling. It is estimated that 26 percent of youth are considered to be heavy drinkers (i.e., they consume five or more drinks within several hours), and 20 percent of youth currently use marijuana (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2008). Similarly, although more than...

    • 8 Risk and Protective Factors of Depressive Symptoms
      (pp. 123-140)
      MARGARET LOMBE and VON E. NEBBITT

      AFRICAN AMERICAN ADOLESCENTS ARE ONE of the most vulnerable, victimized, and disenfranchised groups in contemporary American society (Gibbs & Huang 2003). Several theories attempt to explicate the myriad challenges that urban African American youth face (Herrnstein & Murray 1999; Jensen 1969; Ogbu 1985; Shuey 1966; Wilson 1987). Most of these theories are deficit-based, focusing on risk factors, maladaptations, and negative outcomes in youth. Deficit-based explanations have greatly increased our understanding of how risk factors in various domains (e.g., individual, peer, family, community) negatively affect African American youth. However, these approaches have failed to address multifinality in this vulnerable population of...

  8. PART THREE Implications and Applications
    • 9 Implications to Practice and Service Use
      (pp. 143-151)
      THEDA ROSE, MICHAEL LINDSEY and VON E. NEBBITT

      ADOLESCENT DEVELOPMENT ENCOMPASSES MULTIPLE AND sometimes interacting personal, social, economic, cultural, and environmental factors (Bronfenbrenner 1979; Compas & Millstein 1993; Knopf, Park, & Mulye 2008; Rowling 2006; World Health Organization 2004). Bronfenbrenner (1979) underscored the important role of an adolescent’s environment in understanding their development. Indeed, the surroundings within which children or adolescents develop can serve to either promote or inhibit favorable and negative outcomes.

      The urban environment may play a unique and at times critical role in shaping minority adolescent development. Researchers have surmised, for example, that the developmental outcomes of African American adolescents may be indubitably affected by...

    • 10 A New Direction for Public Housing: THE IMPLICATIONS FOR ADOLESCENT WELL-BEING
      (pp. 152-162)
      CAROL S. COLLARD and VON E. NEBBITT

      AFRICAN AMERICAN ADOLESCENTS LIVING IN urban public housing are exposed to positive and negative influences from their immediate community. Many youth experience favorable outcomes despite living in public housing; they complete their education and go on to lead productive lives. The reasons are varied and not definitive, but there is commonality in the association of individual resiliency, familial support, and community cohesion with more favorable youth outcomes. As chapters 3 and 8 demonstrate, community cohesion plays an important role in influencing a youth’s positive adaptation.

      However, the current conditions of many public housing developments and the surrounding environs often do...

    • 11 Summary and Conclusion: THE CHALLENGES OF PUBLIC HOUSING ENVIRONMENTS FOR YOUTH
      (pp. 163-178)
      JAMES HERBERT WILLIAMS, VON E. NEBBITT, CHRISTOPHER A. VEEH and DAVID B. MILLER

      RESEARCH USUALLY STARTS WITH AN intention to investigate a pressing social issue more empirically and systematically. This book examines the environmental context and developmental trajectory of youth living in public housing. The authors have summarized the current literature and provided a conceptualization of a theoretical model to advance our understanding of the life course of these youth. In addition to putting forth a theoretical model for a better understanding of the challenges of public housing neighborhoods, the authors empirically tested various hypotheses of the theoretical model. Research on youth in public housing has been primarily limited to using a deficit...

  9. CONTRIBUTORS
    (pp. 179-184)
  10. REFERENCES
    (pp. 185-222)
  11. INDEX
    (pp. 223-236)