Female Gangs

653 Words3 Pages
“In 2007, it was estimated that there were over 150,000 female gang members in the United States accounting for about 10 percent of all gang membership. Present-day descriptions of gang members propose that they typically lack a formal education, have violent experiences at their schools, have seriously dysfunctional family lives, and have experienced social problems, including poverty, substance abuse, and gang violence. Membership in female gangs also often is contingent upon one’s ethnic or racial status. Another factor is the lack of appropriate intervention, diversion, and treatment alternatives available to female juvenile compared to males”(Champion, Merlo & Benekos, 2013). Female offenders are indeed involved in gang-related activity, but the manner in which their behavior differs from male gang members
According to Champion, Merlo & Benekos, 2013, “profiling of female gang members has been limited, in part because of their inaccessibility by researchers. For neighborhoods with high crime rates and social disorganization, about 32 percent of males and 29 percent of o claim to be in a gang. In these high risk areas, girls are increasingly involved in gang activities and affiliations”. Girls who join gangs, however, those who join male gangs, are more likely to engage in violent behaviors and participate in delinquent activities. According to Zahn (2008), some evidence indicates that “gang involvement for girls is for a shorter time” than for boys and peak around 14 to15 years of age. Partly due to their smaller numbers, female gangs are less likely to be the focus of the law enforcement efforts.
An active gang member is an adolescent girl or young adult woman who identifies herself as spending a lot of time on the str...

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... participate in gang activity allows them to act as outlets, relaying messages and remaining undetected and often ignored.
Discussion of Findings
The importance female gangs is that often times females joins gangs because of poor home life, a search for an identity, and a search for social interaction and belonging. Women who are in a gang early-life experiences presented a depressing picture of abuse, parental crime, and fatherless homes (Fleisher, 1995, 1998; Miller, 2001). When females joined a gang, they joined a network of friends. Depending on the intersecting gang networks and the age, propensity to violence, crime involvement, young girl on the street would experience different steps of male influence

Conclusion
Female offenders are indeed involved in gang-related activity, but the manner in which their behavior differs from male gang members.
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