youth gangs

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Introduction Throughout Canada, the issues surrounding Youth Gangs has become a major issue not only for members of authority, but for the justice system. Youth gang activity, which can be defined when there is direct or indirect involvement in gang related crime or incidents, occurs in almost every province or territory in Canada, mostly in urban areas, but is increasing in other areas. In Canada, there are 434 youth gangs with about 7 000 members in total (in class notes). Not only do youth gangs exist in Canada, they exist in other countries around the world. There is some controversy defining the term “youth gang”, but there is a general definition to the term. A youth gang can be defined as a “self-formed group of people who engage in anti-social and/or profit-driven criminal activity” (from class notes). Youth gangs run within a certain community and cause a sense of fear and intimidation in others. Who are youth gang members? Members in youth gangs come from a variety of backgrounds. They come from different geographic, ethnic, demographic, and socio-economic contexts (class notes). The majority of youth who are already part of a gang or at risk for being a part of a gang, usually come from groups that struggle with a high level of inequality and lack a lot of things socially. Youth who are of aboriginal descent are more likely to be recruited into a gang and involved in organized crime than youth who are non-aboriginal. 21 percent of all youth gang members in Canada are First Nations and the majority of them come from Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. Youth who become involved in gangs are likely to be using drugs and already taking part of serious or violent crimes. Who is at risk for gang affiliation? There are ma... ... middle of paper ... ...getting sexually transmitted diseases and infections, are at risk of getting beaten by the leader or other groups members, as well as being arrested. Males in gangs are commonly abused, neglected, discriminated against, and suffer from racism at one point in their lives. The majority of youth gang members, 24% are African American. Some male gang members of members of a minority or have recently immigrated to the country or certain area of the country. They often lack another male figure that they can look up to and have as a positive role model and associate themselves with other delinquent peers. The feel that they are unrecognized by others and think that they do not fit in with the majority of people.

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