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Crisis in the USVI: Soaring Youth Violence, Educational Decline, and an Aging Population, According to Report

  • Ernice Gilbert
  • January 15, 2024

The St. Croix Foundation for Community Development recently unveiled the 2023 KIDS COUNT USVI Data Book, titled “A CALL TO ACTION: Sounding the Alarm on Child Well-being in the U.S. Virgin Islands.” This pivotal report, presented during a virtual community stakeholder event on December 19, 2023, sheds light on crucial aspects of youth welfare across the U.S. Virgin Islands. The KIDS COUNT© initiative, backed by the Annie E. Casey Foundation (AECF), stands as a significant data repository in the United States, focusing on children and families. This network spans all 50 States, including the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the USVI, offering vital data for various government agencies. The 2023 report highlights several key areas concerning the youth of the USVI, addressing issues in family and community, education, health, and economic well-being. Specific attention is given to "Opportunity Youth," aged 16-24, who are neither in school nor employed. Notably, violent crimes in t...