Acculturation stress and criminal attitudes as risk factors for externalizing behaviors in recently immigrated adolescents



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Violence risk assessments may fall short with ethnic minority populations because they fail to consider unique contextual and individual factors. In addition, the utility of these instruments may be diminished when administered to ethnic minorities for whom the measure was not originally developed, potentially leading to deleterious effects on the individuals and social system more broadly. This study examined (1) the concurrent validity of a risk assessment measure (i.e., Structured Assessment of Violence Risk in Youth; SAVRY) in relation to caregiver-reported youth externalizing behaviors (measured through the Caregiver-Report Questionnaire Child Behavior Checklist, Externalizing Behaviors scale, parent form; CBCL-EXT) in 39 recently immigrated youth, and (2) the effect of criminal attitudes and acculturation stress on the relation of risk for and caregiver reported externalizing behaviors. Results showed that although the total score of the SAVRY was significantly associated with the total score of the CBCL-EXT; at a subscale level, the SAVRY did not predict total or subscale scores of the CBCL-EXT. Additionally, a significant three-way interaction was found, such that the association between the SAVRY and the CBCL was significant and positive at low levels of criminal attitudes and moderate and high levels of acculturation stress, at moderate levels of both criminal attitudes and acculturation stress, and at high level of criminal attitudes and low levels of acculturation stress.



Immigrant, Violence, Criminal Attitudes, Acculturative Stress, Externalizing Behaviors