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What strategies or concepts could be used to help prevent antisocial behaviors and the crimes that arise from them?

Quick answer:

Strategies and concepts that can help prevent antisocial behaviors (and the crimes that arise from them) include positive role models, discipline and consequences for behavior, family support, and community intervention resources.

Expert Answers

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The first step to preventing crime in people who exhibit antisocial behavior is to try to prevent and curb the antisocial behavior itself as quickly and early as possible. Let's look at some strategies and concepts that may help with this.

First, let's take a moment to define antisocial behaviors. These are actions that cause distress or alarm or aggravation to people outside the household of the person performing the actions. These behaviors are disruptive and annoying (and sometimes threatening and dangerous), and they include making loud noise, swearing and shouting, drunkenness, vandalism, illegal use of vehicles, and abusive speech or actions.

Now let's turn our attention to strategies and concepts. Children learn by watching others, so it is highly important that children have good role models that present proper behavioral patterns. These role models must include trusted adults whom children can watch and imitate but also peers who model responsible and appropriate behavior.

Further, to prevent antisocial behavior from a young age, children need to learn that their words and actions have consequences, and this means discipline. Many children begin and continue acting out in antisocial ways because no one corrects them for their behavior or because they learn that behaving in such a way gets them what they want, be it attention, a sense of belonging, or some kind of material gain.

To prevent the behavior, one must demonstrate that it can and will lead to undesirable consequences like loss of privileges and other punishments. On the other hand, young people should be praised for proper behavior, for this kind of positive attention increases the likelihood of such behaviors being repeated and others being abandoned.

Family support is also a necessary element in the prevention of antisocial behaviors and the crimes that may proceed from them. Parents must be given the necessary resources, including training in parenting and discipline, material assistance, and psychological support. Community intervention resources can also contribute to preventing antisocial behaviors, especially when they provide a safe place for young people to socialize in a positive environment.

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