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Preventing At-Risk Youth from Joining Gangs

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Photo by leochi via Flickr

The City Council is voting today on one-year gang prevention contracts for six organizations to work with at-risk youth. But what defines a child as at-risk and likely to join a gang? The Daily News lays it out:

  • lack of parental supervision;
  • early childhood aggression;
  • delinquent beliefs, including acceptance of antisocial behaviors;
  • negative life events;
  • having peers involved in deviant behavior;
  • a commitment to street-oriented peers.

If passed, six organizations will get one-year half million dollar contracts and another six are expected to be voted on later this Fall. One year is a short time for this important work, so let's hope that if this program actually works to help the identified children, these contracts get extended year after year.