Warning Signs of Gang Involvement
- Abrupt changes in your child's selection of friends
- Changing pattern in dress such as wearing the same color combination all the time
- Gang symbols on books or clothing
- Secrecy about activities
- Possessing unexplained, relatively large sums of money
- Sudden changes in behavior, including a diminishing interest in the family and school, and staying out without good reason
- Problems with the police
If you notice these patterns, get help. Contact the school counselor or the Gang Crimes Unit of your Police Department, 760-435-4264. Unit staff may be able to help you find counseling and tell you how to help your child. Contact the Crime Prevention Unit at 760-435-4543 for a list of resources.
Protecting Your Child from Gang Involvement
- Supervise your children's activities and know their friends.
- Discourage your children from hanging around with gang members.
- Make sure you know how your children are spending their free time.
- Check up on your children occasionally to make sure they are doing what they say they are doing.
- Do not allow your children to stay out late or spend a lot of unsupervised time out in the streets.
- Get your children involved in supervised, positive group activities.
- Develop good communication with your children and take the time to listen to what your child is telling you. Make no topic off limits.
- Spend positive time with your children and regularly praise and encourage them, to support them emotionally.
- Become involved in your children's education.