Childhood Exposure to Violence

It is estimated that 60% of our children and youth are exposed to violence. Violence can range from bullying to domestic violence. Whether victimized or witnessed an act of violence, this exposure has been affecting the education of our youth. In the past five years the percent of high school students who report they have missed school because they felt unsafe either at school or traveling to and from school has increased by 44%, from 10.5% in 2005 to 15.1% in 2009.


What would be the best course of action and who would be affected?

By lighting our streets with solar powered streetlights, we would create a perception of safety in our neighborhoods. The children, especially, would be affected and benefit by this. will be able to travel to and from school safely and would be willing to participate in after school activities that would run through the night.

Why would this plan be beneficial and how would it relate to urban sustainability?

Having the community be involved in urban planning and considering their needs would create a positive impact to the health of the community. The safety of our citizens create a safe city. The political commitment would have to be at its highest level. Reducing the exposure to violence with our youth would create a safer thus healthier environment to live in.




3 thoughts on “Childhood Exposure to Violence

  1. We do have a duty to create safer neighborhoods, through community organizing, policy and urban development. We need more POC in these fields who come from this background and communities. Which is not happening and could be seen in CUPPA is mostly white males there and is run for the most part by them. We have a lot we have to work on.


  2. Everywhere on the news we hear about the safety of the children. Unfortunately, there are many places in chicago that expose violence to the children. I like your idea to have more light on the streets. It can be very frighting to walk alone. I found this article about neighborhood watchers. It can be another idea to help the children.


  3. Street lights are one part of the solution. Furthermore, the city should invest in the social fabrics of the neighborhood most affected by violence. It might seem too easy, but more eyes on the streets lead to greater security for all residents. I encourage you to read the story of an organization called MASK (Mothers Against Senseless Killings), which operates in Englewood. Their approach is rather simple. Every afternoon, mothers, fathers and other community members meet at a street corner of Stewart and 75th and spend some hours having conversations and bbq, watching the kids play, talk to the neighbors… Since they started to organize this sit-outs, there was not one shooting on the block anymore. They brought back a sense of community.


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