Scared Straight and Other Juvenile Awareness Programs for Preventing Juvenile Delinquency: A Systematic Review

Based upon a systematic review of the extant literature this study concludes that programs like ‘Scared Straight’ are likely to have a harmful effect and increase delinquency relative to doing nothing at all to the same youths. Given these results, we cannot recommend this program as a crime prevention strategy. Agencies that permit such programs, however, must rigorously evaluate them not only to ensure that they are doing what they purport to do (prevent crime) – but at the very least they do not cause more harm than good to the very citizens they pledge to protect.

Anthony Petrosino, John Buehler, and Carolyn Turpin-Petrosino
Campbell Collaboration, 2013

www.campbellcollaboration.org/lib/download/13/Scared+Straight_R.pdf

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