GANG AWARENESS AND RESOURCES

AWARENESS

What is a gang?

A group or association of three or more persons who may have a common identifying sign, symbol, or name and who individually or collectively engage in, or have engaged in, criminal activity which creates an atmosphere of fear and intimidation. Criminal activity includes juvenile acts that if committed by an adult would be a crime. Definition taken from the 2005 NAGIA National Gang Threat Assessment (pg 66) where it is identified and explained.

  
Why do people join gangs?
People join gangs for numerous reasons. Usual reasons include: fun, excitement, a sense of belonging, a need for attention or status, companionship, intimidation, peer pressure, financial gain, protection and a failure to understand what being in a gang really means.
  
How old are gang members?   
Age's range from 14-26; however gang members have been seen as young as 8 years of age and as old as 40 or 50. The older members may have gained status as an OG (original gangster).
  
What are the consequences of living the gangster lifestyle?
Just to name a few: Increased possibility of becoming injured or killed, enhanced risk of drug and alcohol addition, gang related crimes result in enhanced penalties and sentencing, and risk putting family and friend in harms way. 
  
Do gangs consist of all racial backgrounds and genders?
YES. All racial backgrounds and both male and female genders belong to gangs. Many gangs that pose as cultural organizations reveal their true tendencies only after you are accepted into the gang?
  
Are there any consequences if you belong to a gang and try to get out?
Consequences can range from beat outs / jump outs that inflicts serious harm to the person trying to leave, harm to one's family or friends, and even death. ALTHOUGH CONSEQUENCES SEEM HARSH MANY GANG MEMBERS HAVE LEFT THEIR GANG UNHARMED. REMEMBER THERE IS ALWAYS A WAY OUT IF YOU ARE INVOLVED.
  
Is it true that most of these gang members are just WANNA BE's?
The wanna be's are soon to become gonna be's. The wanna be's have the most to prove and sometimes are more violent than the established gang member.

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