A Multiple Disadvantage Model

In this article, Cheng and Li (2017) discuss various causes of young people acting out and how the child welfare system influences those causes

Three waves of interviews with a sample of kids and their caretakers were conducted as part of the survey. The researchers gathered data on the social and mental health of children in the child welfare system, as well as on their academic and social functioning. The research also looked at how carers behaved and how they used the resources available in the community. The author employed a different approach known as the "multiple disadvantage model" to widen the scope of his findings and provide insight into the delinquent behaviors of the African American ethnic group. Besides that, social relationships that represent social integration were considered as either a risk or deterrent factor in delinquency of adolescents.

Teenagers aged from 11 to 17 years were selected.

Their attitude towards schooling, the things they did and with whom, way of communication, and the time they returned home on school and weekend nights have been put into consideration. Further variables – such as getting in touch or leaving home without permission – affected the way the teenagers communicated with their caregivers and their overall activities in the child welfare system. Consequently, five responses were given per item ranging from 1 (almost never) to 5 (almost always). As such, high scores implied strong parental monitoring and low scores meant less or no parental control at all. The latter resulted into deviant peer affiliations whereby they associated with peers that exhibited deviance. Notably, the deviant peers showed behaviors of threatening their peers, stealing things worth $5 or less, damaging things, participating in unlawful activity, cheating on tests among others, etc. The authors analyzed that the delinquent behavior was the result of the poor child-parent monitoring and nurturing.

Other social-relationship factors such as caregiver-teenager relationship and mental factors, which were used to measure depression, were equally considered.

The findings revealed that any teenager-caregiver relationship that was poorly nurtured led to maltreatment. Physical, sexual, and neglectful forms of abuse (including the physical one as well as the cases of non-supervision and abandonment) were the most prevalent ones. Other maltreatments (exploitative, educational, emotional, and moral/legal in their nature) were noted. Furthermore, African-American interactions in the child welfare system were mixed. Moreover, male adolescents stood higher chances of demonstrating delinquency characteristics than their female counterparts (Cheng and Li, 2017, p. 207).

Their findings revealed that most teens from low-income families were inclined to crimes.

A study by Kaylor, Ruffolo, Ortega and Clarke (2008) indicates that this is only a misconception, especially the issue of drug-induced delinquency, since adolescents from poor backgrounds can hardly afford them. It is the "well-placed" in the society adolescents that are most likely to use drugs. They argue that monitoring doesn't necessarily reduce delinquency among children. For instance, an adolescent who has the nerves to beat their parent can never be tamed by any amount of parental monitoring. Furthermore, social media has provided adolescents with uncensored information regardless of their age and sexuality. This also should have been included in this survey because it has provided more information than it is necessary for the youths.


Cheng, T. C., & Li, Q. (2017). Adolescent delinquency in child welfare system: A multiple disadvantage model. Children & Youth Services Review, 73205-212. Retrieved from doi:10.1016/j.childyouth.2016.12.018

Grogan-Kaylor, A., Ruffolo, M. C., Ortega, R. M., & Clarke, J. (2008). Behaviors of Youth Involved in the Child Welfare System. Child Abuse & Neglect: The International Journal, 32(1), 35-49.

Deadline is approaching?

Wait no more. Let us write you an essay from scratch

Receive Paper In 3 Hours
Calculate the Price
275 words
First order 15%
Total Price:
$38.07 $38.07
Calculating ellipsis
Hire an expert
This discount is valid only for orders of new customer and with the total more than 25$
This sample could have been used by your fellow student... Get your own unique essay on any topic and submit it by the deadline.

Find Out the Cost of Your Paper

Get Price