Discussion question

Social Programs and Policy

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Last week, you examined historical and contemporary social responses to juvenile delinquency. Some of the earliest responses to juvenile delinquency suggested that the juvenile’s family should be responsible for addressing delinquency. In contrast, most contemporary responses to juvenile delinquency suggest that because delinquency is a societal problem, the government must address it through the enactment of social programs and policies. For example, at one time, the federal government embarked on a national urban renewal program and enacted social policies to combat poverty, and in effect, reduce juvenile delinquency. Have you ever wondered how or why the government creates such programs or policies? In many cases, government programs and policies are based on theories and research from criminologists and other social scientists who study social problems such as juvenile delinquency.

To prepare for this Discussion:

Review the assigned pages from Chapters 4 and 5, as well as Chapter 6 in the course text, Juvenile Delinquency.

Focus on sociological theories that account for juvenile delinquency.

Consider how sociological theories might influence public policies related to juvenile delinquency and justice.

Select a sociological theory to use for this Discussion. The theory should be different from those you selected for the Application this week.

Consider the main principles of the sociological theory you selected.

Reflect on how the theory you selected might influence social programs and policies related to juvenile delinquency and justice.

With these thoughts in mind:

Write a brief description of a sociological theory related to juvenile delinquency. Then, explain how the theory might influence social programs and policies related to juvenile delinquency and justice. Be specific and use examples to support your explanation.

Note: Put the name of the theory you selected in the first line of your post. You will be asked to respond to a colleague who selected a theory that you did not.

Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.

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