Life events are associated with an increased likelihood of adolescent smoking. This study examined a family member's job loss as a predictor of smoking initiation over a 1-year period. Southern California students completed surveys in 6th and 7th grade. Of the 2,168 students, 252 (12%) reported that an adult in the household had lost a job within the past 6 months. Controlling for demographic, socioeconomic. educational, and parenting characteristics. 6th-grade never-smokers who reported a job loss were significantly more likely to have tried smoking by 7th grade and to have smoked in the past 30 days. Job loss for a household member is a risk factor for adolescents' involvement in problem behaviors such as smoking.
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