Title

On the Relationships Between Commercial Sexual Exploitation/Prostitution, Substance Dependency, and Delinquency in Youthful Offenders

SelectedWorks Author Profiles:

Joan A Reid

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

January 2014

Abstract

Researchers have consistently linked commercial sexual exploitation (CSE) of youth and involvement in prostitution with substance dependency and delinquency. Yet, important questions remain regarding the directionality and mechanisms driving this association. Utilizing a sample of 114 CSE/prostituted youth participating in the Pathways to Desistance study—a longitudinal investigation of the transition from adolescence to adulthood among serious adolescent offenders—the current study examined key criminal career parameters of CSE/prostitution including age of onset and rate of recurrence. Additionally, structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to explore concurrent associations and causal links between CSE/prostitution and drug involvement. Findings show a general sequential pattern of the ages of onset with substance use and selling drugs occurring prior to CSE/prostitution, evidence that a small group with chronic CSE/prostitution account for the majority of CSE/prostitution occurrences, and high rates of repeated CSE/prostitution. SEM results suggest CSE/prostituted youth persist in drug involvement from year to year but infrequently experience perpetuation of CSE/prostitution from year to year. Concurrent associations between CSE/prostitution and drug involvement were found across the length of the study. Additionally, drug involvement at one year was linked to CSE/prostitution during the subsequent year during early years of the study.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.