Neighborhood Income and Physical and Social Disorder in Canada: Associations with Young Children's Competencies

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Abstract

This study examined the association of census level, observational, and parent–reported neighborhood characteristics on the verbal and behavioral competencies of a national sample of Canadian preschoolers (N= 3,350). Children's verbal ability scores were positively associated with residing in neighborhoods with affluent residents and negatively associated with residing in neighborhoods with poor residents and in neighborhoods with low cohesion, even after controlling for family socioeconomic factors. Behavior problem scores were higher when children lived in neighborhoods that had fewer affluent residents, high unemployment rates, and neighborhoods with low cohesion, after controlling for family socioeconomic factors. These findings are discussed in light of neighborhood studies of children in the United States in the mid–1990s.

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