• Chapter

Girls in the juvenile justice system


Anderson, S. (2012). Girls in the juvenile justice system: The causes and correlates of girls’ involvement. In S. Miller, L. D. Leve, & P. K. Kerig (Eds.), Delinquent Girls: Contexts, Relationships, and Adaptation (pp. 41-54). New York, NY: Springer.


Justice-involved girls are an exclusive yet heterogeneous group of adolescent girls whose behaviors range from persistent power struggles with their mothers to more serious assaultive behaviors. These are the girls for whom society struggles to understand which protective factors can sufficiently buffer the impact of childhood risks, which intervention programs are most effective, and ultimately what the critical influences of a girls’ involvement with the juvenile justice system are. There is not a single risk factor that can explain the development of delinquency; rather delinquent behaviors can be conceived as the nexus of personal experience, peer pressure, societal influence, biological proclivities, social support, and opportunity.