Self-integrity as the Protective Shield for Peer Group Loitering among At-risk Youth

  •  Sheau Tsuey Chong    
  •  Juliana Rosmidah Jaafar    
  •  Samsudin A. Rahim    
  •  Nor Ba’yah Abdul Kadir    
  •  Subhi N.    
  •  Denise Koh    
  •  Lina Liyana Khairuddin    
  •  Nen S.    


Loitering among urban youth is often linked with group activities that occur in public places without having any specific purposes. The activity is conducted together as a group among those who share the same values and ideologies. This article analyzes the involvement of prosocial and antisocial activities among 636 young people (423 loiterers and 213 non-loiterers), aged 13 to 25 years in at-risk areas in Kuala Lumpur. The purpose of this study is to compare the prosocial and antisocial behavior of at-risk young people premised by loitering and non-loitering behavior. The researchers compared loiterers and non-loiterers in terms of their levels of self-integrity that may contribute to prosocial and antisocial behaviors. The results showed that at-risk young people who had high levels of self-integrity had lower risk of getting involved in group loitering. On the other hand, the results also indicated that group loitering behavior led to antisocial behavior. In addition, there was no significant difference between loitering and non-loitering behavior in terms of the level of participation in prosocial community activities. This finding supports previous loitering literature which suggests that loitering behavior among young people will lead to risky behaviors. In order to prevent more at-risk young people getting involved in group loitering which may subsequently lead to antisocial behavior, positive youth development programs should focus on boosting young people’s self-integrity. Future studies could focus on the effect of loitering behavior in other at-risk setting in rural area.

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