UC Santa Barbara Public Affairs and Communications

NEWS RELEASE

FATHERS ARE KEY IN PREVENTING JUVENILE DELINQUENCY

January 15, 1999

The absence of fathers in a home doubles the likelihood that young sons will turn to crime, according to William S. Comanor, a professor of economics at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Comanor will examine the connection between juvenile delinquency and fatherless families in his talk, "Does the Absence of Fathers Lead to Juvenile Crime? An Economic Analysis," on Jan. 20.

The 90-minute presentation begins at 5:15 p.m. at the University Club, 1332 Santa Barbara St. It is part of the ongoing UCSB Economics Forum, a program for people interested in in-depth discussions on the fascinating and complex world of economics.

Comanor and his colleague, Llad Phillips, a UCSB economics professor, found in a recent study of fatherless homes that fathers play critical roles in steering sons away from delinquency.

The rising juvenile delinquency in the last 30 years can be blamed easily on the increasing divorce rate, Comanor argues. More often than not children lose daily contact with their fathers after a divorce.

Furthermore, a stepfather cannot replace the father's influence, he said. A mother-only family is preferable to the introduction of a new father-figure whether it is a boyfriend or a new husband.

A UCSB professor since 1975, Comanor holds a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University. He also teaches health services at UCLA and is director of that university's research program in pharmaceutical economics and policy. In addition, Comanor was the former chief economist and director of the Bureau of Economics at the Federal Trade Commission.

The UCSB Office of Community Relations in association with the Department of Economics co-sponsors the event with the UCSB General Affiliates.

Tickets are $5 for affiliates and Chancellor's Council members, and $8 for non-members. Reservations are recommended. Call 893-4388 for additional information.

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