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Juvenile victimisation in a group of young Sri Lankan adults

Authors:

Aswini D Fernando ,

Department of Paediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, LK
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Wasantha Karunasekera

Department of Paediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, LK
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Abstract

Objective To study the prevalence of juvenile victimisation in a group of young adults.
Method A juvenile victimisation questionnaire was distributed among 1322 Sri Lankan undergraduates. The questionnaire consisted of different modules (child maltreatment, conventional crime, peer-sibling victimisation, indirect victimisation, introduction to substances and parental deprivation).
Results The response rate was 90%. The mean age of the cohort was 21.8 years. 59% were females. 44% and 36% had experienced sexual and physical maltreatment respectively. In both categories males were affected more than females (p < 0.001). Physical abuse had commonly taken place at school (51%) and home (40%). Witnessing violence at home was the highest form of indirect victimisation (66%). 10% were introduced to substances in childhood. Usage of substances (cigarettes, alcohol and drugs) was significantly higher in children whose fathers used substances compared to children whose fathers did not (p < 0.001).
Conclusion Many children in Sri Lanka are exposed to victimisation. They seem to suffer these in the very environments that should be nurturing and protecting them.

Key words: juvenile victimisation, child maltreatment, Sri Lanka

DOI: 10.4038/cmj.v54i3.1200

Ceylon Medical Journal Vol.54(3) 2009 80-84

How to Cite: Fernando, A.D. & Karunasekera, W., (2009). Juvenile victimisation in a group of young Sri Lankan adults. Ceylon Medical Journal. 54(3), pp.80–84. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/cmj.v54i3.1200
Published on 13 Oct 2009.
Peer Reviewed

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