But what can you do as a mum? How do you know if they're getting involved in a gang and how can you help them?
- Are you worried about gangs? Join Chat
The government has recognised that there is a new gang culture among young people and has put together a useful guide for parents about gangs which has lots of excellent advice. Here's some of the best tips if you're worried.
Why do people join gangs?Many young people will not recognise themselves to be in a gang, but in a group of friends - and most groups of young people do not commit crime. It's important to point out that being in a gang is not illegal, it is only the criminal offences committed that are illegal.
Common reasons why young people may join a gang are:
- to be recognised
- for power
- to gain friends
- for protection
- to be accepted
- for money from crime
- for excitement
- for a sense of belonging
- for respect