Is It Obvious My Son or Daughter Is In A Gang???
- Wearing a lot of one specific color or a combination of colors, such as blue and grey, black and yellow, etc.
- Tilting hats to the side, wearing bandanna's - again the bandanna's will be in the same colors as the clothing.
- Gang graffiti on notebooks, personal belongings
- Defensiveness about how they spend their time, and who they spend it with
- Alienating themselves from family, school, church involvement
- Doing poorly in school - including skipping school
- Three dots :. on their body parts such as hands, in between the fingers, ankles, hairlines, also on their Face book or My Space pages
- Insisting on buying clothing or hats with crowns, pitchforks, the number 13, 18, 14,7
- Breaking the curfew law
- Drugs or drug paraphernalia such as pipes, smoking papers, cigars
- Signs of using drugs such as red eyes, dilated pupils
- Using Roman numerals
- Suddenly being called by a "different" name by their friends
- Coming home "beat up" and not admitting to being in a fight
- Suddenly wearing rosaries or crucifixes as a fashion statement
These things listed above are just a few of the signs that parents need to watch out for.
Most gang members range from 13 to 35 years of age. Some gang members start as young as 9 years old. It is not just boys. Girls are very active in the gangs as well. The members that are 15 to 18 appear to be the most violent. This is the period of time when new members are trying to prove themselves to the older gang members and raise their status in the group.
GANG ASSESSMENT TOOL
- Is there graffiti in or near your neighborhood? Yes = 5 points
- Is the graffiti crossed out? Yes = 10 points
- Do the young people in your community wear alike clothing colors, jewelry, flash hand signs, or display other behaviors that may be gang related? Yes= 10 points
- Are you aware if illegal drugs are available in your neighborhood? Yes = 10 points
- Was there an increase in the number of physical confrontations within the past 12 months in your neighborhood? Yes = 5 points
- Is there an increasing presence of weapons in your community? Yes =5 points
- Has there been a "drive by" shooting in your community? Yes = 15 points
- Have you had a "show by" display of weapons in your community? Yes = 10 points
- Is the truancy rate and/or burglaries in your community increasing? Yes = 5 points
- Have you noticed graffiti in your neighborhood? Yes = 15 points
- Have you noticed graffiti crossed out in your neighborhood? 15 points
- Is there a history of gangs in your community? Yes = 15 points
- Are you seeing a presence of informal social groups with unusual names such as crew, king, disciples, queen? Yes = 15 points
- Have you noticed large traffic of young people at one house in your neighborhood? Yes = 10 points
ADD UP YOUR SCORE:
0-20 POINTS = NO PROBLEM
25-45 POINTS = EMERGING PROBLEM
50-65 POINTS = YOU HAVE PROBLEMS
70+ POINTS = THERE ARE SERIOUS PROBLEMS
AT 50+ POINTS A NEED EXISTS TO DEVELOP A GANG PREVENTION AND INTERVENTION PROGRAM.
If you have questions or are concerned about gang activity either in your family or in your neighborhood, please do not hesitate to contact the Watchful Eye Foundation. Your calls are completely confidential. We speak English and Spanish both.
The Watchful Eye Foundation is a non profit working to ensure that our community is safe for everyone to live a healthy and happy life.
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