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August 2007Vol. 8, No. 7Child and Youth Well-Being Index

An annual index of child well-being shows that American children engage in fewer risky behaviors than in the past, but several other measures of well-being are not so positive. The Foundation for Child Development Child and Youth Well-Being Index (CWI) Project at Duke University issues an annual report on how children are faring. This year's CWI is an updated measure of trends between 1975 and 2005, with projections for 2006.

The decline found in risky behavior is based on measures of teen pregnancy, drug and alcohol use among youth, and violent crime—all of which were down. But other major trends show that progress in quality of life for U.S. children has stalled, ending an 8-year upward trend that lasted from 1994 until 2002. Children's health also continued to decline, which could be attributed in part to the escalating rates of child obesity.

To read the full report, by Kenneth C. Land, visit the CWI website: (PDF - 200 KB)

Related Item

Children's Bureau Express "Child Well-Being Shows Slight Improvement" (June 2004).