GANG AWARENESS Prevention through Education
Outline • What is a gang ? • Gang identifiers • Who joins gangs? • Why do youth join gangs ? • Signs of Involvement • On the Home Front • Community Response to gangs
What is a gang? • “ A group of persons gathering together on a formal or informal basis for an unlawful purpose.”
What is a “Gang”? • Definition: Webster’s Dictionary • A group of persons working to unlawful or antisocial ends; for example, a band of antisocial adolescents or, • A group of persons having informal and close relations. Criminal Intelligence Service Canada • A group of people consorting together to engage in unlawful activity.
2002 Canadian Police Survey on Youth GangsSummary of Findings Provinces with highest percentage of jurisdictions reporting active youth gang activity are: • Saskatchewan 35% • Manitoba 30% • B.C. 27% • Ontario (26%).
2002 estimated 434 youth gangs in Canada comprising of 7,071 members Most in Ontario with 216 gangs and 3,320 members Followed by Saskatchewan with 28 youth gangs and 1,315 members Average age of a youth gang member is 16 to 18 years of age.
2002 Gang Numbers • Saskatoon – 580 members • Regina – 270 members
2007 Gang Numbers • Saskatoon – 800 members • Regina – 500 members
ORIGIN OF SASKATCHEWAN STREET GANGS • Early 1990's Regina - Manitoba Warriors • 1994 Native Syndicate formed to compete for drug & sex trade in Regina • Manitoba Indian Posse began to appear at same time
SASKATCHEWAN’S STREET GANGS • Brown Pride • Native Blood Line • Blood 4 Life • North Central Crips • North Central Roughriders • Hells Angels • Red Alert • Crazy Dragons • Terror Squad • Scorpion Brotherz • Natives looking to Get Paid aka NLTP • Saskatchewan Warriors • Indian Posse • Native Syndicate • Native Syndicate Killers • Crazy Cree • Mixed Blood • Crips (defunct) • Tribal Warriors • RPG Mafia • Indian Mafia • Tribal Brothers • Native Army • Westside Brotherhood
Who Joins Gangs ? • Gangs spread across all races and ethnic origins • Not restricted to any one socio-economic group • Often those dealing with drug and/or alcohol addictions
Why Do Youth Join Gangs ? • Surrogate family • Identity or recognition • Family history • Protection • Intimidation • Lack of alternatives • Money
GANG INITIATIONS • Strikes • Paperwork • Jumped / Beaten in (do a minute) • Sexed in • Blessed in
Gang Identifiers Graffiti: • claim turf • pride • intimidate • rivalries
FOUND GRAFFITI... What do you do??? • Report - to police • Record -photograph and document • Remove
Gang Identifiers Clothing: • corresponds to their gang colors • bandanas, altered ball caps and shirts
Gang Identifiers Tattoos: • loyalty • gang name, nickname or symbol
Gang Identifiers Hand Signs: • Membership • Confrontation
Gang Activities • Graffiti • Weapons • Drugs • Sex Trade Industry • Assaults • Break And Enters • Robberies • Recruitment • Initiations – Beatings/Rapes
Signs of Gangs • Increase in graffiti • Increase in crime • Increase in groups of unknown subjects • Increase in suspected narcotics activity
Females and Gangs • Do we have female gangs? • How many females do you think are involved in Gang activities?
Females and Gangs • We have approximately 11,000 street gang members under the age of 28 in Canada. (male) • We have 8 – 10,000 females that have a relationship with known gang members. • Approximately 8 – 11 % of females are actually involved/blooded into the gang.
GIRLS in GANGS • To join, must either do a “minute” or be “sex’d in” by several gang members in succession • Often used as “mules” to carry drugs and weapons • Likely to be “pimped” out • Baby Blue Crew & HIT (Hoes In Training)
Changes in Physical Appearance • Lack of personal cleanliness, messy in appearance • Wearing gang-style clothing • Unusual haircuts • Tattoos • Unusual eyebrow markings • Unusual pen marks, bruises or burns on arms, hands, and body
Changes in Behaviour and Personality • Abrupt changes in mood • Hostility, defiance of rules • Extravagant spending • Bad attitudes towards family & school • Having unusually large amounts of money • Blaming, lying, making excuses • Desire for excessive privacy
Changes in School • Lower grades, neglect homework • Frequently being late • Skipping school/classes • Falling asleep in class • Discipline problems • Suspended or expelled from school • Quitting school
Physical Evidence of Gang Involvement • Tattoos • Involved in bullying or assaults • Frequent negative confrontations with the law • Increase/Use in substance abuse • Using hand signs, using new nickname • Drawing graffiti symbols on books, folders and bedroom walls
Changes in Friends and Interests • Sudden change in friends • Friends rarely introduced and seldom come to the house • More time spent in room or away from home • Secrecy about actions and possessions
On the Home Front Countering the Lure of Gangs • Know your child’s friends. • Occupy your child’s free time with school, sports or other community activities • Plan family outings and activities. • Give your child responsibilities or chores at home. • Don’t allow your child to wear gang colors or paraphernalia. • Don’t allow him or her to be out late at night.
On the Home Front Countering the Lure of Gangs • Know where your child is going when he or she is out late at night. Know whom your child is with. • Participate in your child’s education. Know what’s happening at school. • Develop anti-gang attitudes in your home. Let your child know that you will not tolerate gang involvement.
On the Home Front Countering the Lure of Gangs: • Spend time with your child. If you spend time with him or her, he or she will not have to go to a gang to fill that need. • Be a positive role model.
Community Response • Acknowledge gang activity in community. • Form a community anti-gang group. • Identify your community’s areas of desired change. • Set your major goals. • Develop an action plan based on the community’s needs, desires and available resources. • Evaluate and assess your progress.
Community Involvement • Young People • Parents • Community Organizations • Business Community • Social Agencies • Religious institutions • Schools • Law enforcement
Do you know someone involved in gangs or criminal activity including drugs? You can help solve or prevent crime by calling one of the following numbers: • Sasktel Cellular *TIPS or *8477 • Online at www.saskcrimestoppers.com • You do not have to give your name or reveal your identity • You will not be required to testify in court • You could earn a cash award up to $2,000
"Let us put our minds together and see what life we can make for our children." Chief Sitting Bull
Thank You Questions?
Gang Related Web Sites • www.gangsorus.com (Robert Walker gang expert) • www.nagia.org (National Alliance of Gang Investigators Assoc.) • www.ongia.org (Ontario Gang Investigators Assoc.) • www.streetgangs.com
If your thinking about joining a street gang, make sure you put the thought into joining “Canada’s Largest Street Gang”….
16,000 + Regular Members 5,600 Civilian Members and Public Servants