Youth Violence in Illinois

October 19th, 2009

 Today on Community Media & You, we take another look at how youth violence is impacting teens in Illinois. The recent events at Fenger High School exposed the nation to an arduous world Chicago African-American teen males must navigate. However, how does being a witness to this violence affect young women as they progress to adulthood? How is their education and development being impacted? What solutions are they seeking to reduce the level of violence in their communities?

Over a quarter of a million Illinois girls live in homes that are below the federal poverty level. One out of ten Chicago high school girls reported that they did not attend school because of concerns for their safety. One in five juvenile arrests in Illinois were girls and many more face serious violence according to a recent study released by the Women and Girls Collective Action Network.

Last summer, we talked with three CPS students from the Mikva Challenge Youth Safety Council about youth violence. Today we look at how violence impacts girls in Chicago communities. On this edition of Community Media & You we’ll talk with Keisha Farmer Smith, manager of Girl World at Alternatives, Inc.; Pat Hill, executive director of the African American Police League; and Olivia Sanchez, executive director of Project Vida.

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