Recreational Gun Use by California Adolescents

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Recreational Gun Use by California Adolescents

Category: Unintentional, Youth|Journal: Health Education and Behavior (full text)|Author: K Vittes, S Sorenson|Year: 2005

Most research on adolescents and firearms focus on urban populations, handguns, and homicide. The present investigation examines the prevalence and correlates of recreational gun use (RGU) – for hunting or target shooting – among 5801 community-residing 12- to 17-year old Californians. Data are from the first statewide California Health Interview Survey (CHIS), and person, design, and population weights were applied to the data. About one-fifth (22.4%) of California adolescents report that they have gone hunting or target shooting. Nearly two thirds (62.8%) have hunted with a family member, typically (67.3%) their father. Recreational gun use among adolescents appears to be linked to a few basic demographic characteristics; most notably, males had an AOR of RGU nearly five times that of females. Some of the variables associated with RGU are consistent with those for violent gun use; differences, however, suggest that separate approaches to preventing firearm-related injury may be warranted.

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