Assaultive injuries appear to be the end result of a causative web of factors that include alcohol, firearms, and dangerous urban environments. To assess the assaultive risk posed by these hazards, we are conducting a population-based case-control study involving epidemiologic space-time modeling. Adolescents typically travel in and around the home and neighborhoods as dictated by their daily routines as students, as employees, with family, and with friends. Thus, their movements through space and time are influenced by the locations of their schools, jobs, homes, and places of recreation. Because daily routines influence activities in space and time, the activities adolescents participate in regularly influence the time they spend in places where they might be exposed protective factors and to risk factors, which may include alcohol and firearms. Yet, little is known about how and to what extent adolescents are exposed to alcohol and firearms during their daily activities, and the resulting risk to be assaulted.
The aims of the study are to answer these research questions:
- Do adolescents who consume alcohol and/or carry firearms face a differential risk of being shot with a firearm, compared to adolescents who do not consume alcohol or carry firearms?
- Do adolescents whose daily activities occur in surroundings rich in alcohol and/or firearms face a differential risk of being shot with a firearm, compared to adolescents who do not spend time in surroundings rich in alcohol and/or firearms?
- Is an adolescent’s risk of being shot with a firearm determined primarily by the adolescent’s personal use of alcohol and/or firearms, or primarily by spending time in surroundings rich in alcohol and/or firearms?
- Do the factors that put adolescents at risk of being shot with a firearm also put adolescents at risk to be injured by assault with a non-gun weapon?
• Last updated: 11/12/2012