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J Interpers Violence. 2006 Sep;21(9):1169-90.

Risk factors for peer sexual harassment in schools.

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  • 1University of Southern Maine School of Social Work, Portland, ME 04104-9300, USA. sfineran@usm.maine.edu


This study introduces potential risk factors for victimization and perpetration of sexual harassment among teens not previously studied. The first set of analyses compared histories of perpetration and victimization by gender, as well as the relationship between risk factors and perpetration or victimization. For girls (r = .544) and boys (r = .700), the relationships between perpetration and victimization histories were very strong. Most proposed risk factors were also significantly related to perpetration and victimization histories for both genders, including alcohol use frequency, delinquency, histories of family violence and victimization, cultural and personal power, and retaliation, with all increasing as perpetration or victimization history increased. For girls, two direct paths were moderately related to victimization--delinquency and family victimization. For boys, only one variable--perpetration history--was related to victimization history. Four variables were directly related to greater sexual harassment perpetration-greater personal power, delinquency, family violence, and family victimization.

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