How to Tell if Your Child is Involved in a Gang

Here's a really helpful guide from 2nd Chance Youth Services:

Gangs leave signs of their presence. Your child may adopt some of those signs as either someone who wants to be a gang member, already a gang member or is imitating gang behavior and dress. Your child may be:

  • Wearing specific colors or emblems on clothing
  • Special hand signals to form letters with their fingers
  • Gang symbols or graffiti on their room walls, books and school supplies, or clothing
  • Major and negative behavior changes, such as:
  • Declining school performance
  • Staying out late at night without a good reason
  • “Hanging around” with known or suspected gang members
  • Carrying weapons
  • Possessing unexplained, relatively large sums of money

Please keep in mind that just because your child may be reflecting one or more of these behaviors, it does not mean they are joining a gang. But this should be a warning to you to take a more active roll in your child’s life to correct this behavior.

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