Posted on December 15, 2004

Study On Black Youths Depicts A Grim Reality

Ilene Lelchuk, San Francisco Chronicle, Dec. 10

African American children comprise 11 percent of San Francisco’s young population but make up 70 percent of the kids in foster care, according to a new report that also found that more than half of black male youths killed violently on the city’s streets during the past two years had been victims of child abuse or neglect.

The study on the city’s child protective services, conducted by a task force of community leaders, academic researchers and the Department of Human Services, depicts a grim reality of San Francisco’s shrinking African American community.


— African American families made up 45 percent of all child abuse referrals, and of those referrals, 49 percent were substantiated.

— African American children tend to stay in foster care longer, partly because many of them are placed with relatives, and there is less motivation for a parent reunion or adoption.

— There are 1,095 black youths in San Francisco between the ages of 15 and 17, according to the U.S. Census. About 400 of them were taken to juvenile hall in 2002, according to the Department of Juvenile Probation.