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NCJ Number: 159302 Find in a Library
Title: Gangs: A Challenge to Law Enforcement
Journal: CJ International  Volume:7  Issue:4  Dated:(July-August 1991)  Pages:1,22
Author(s): J Sutton
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 2
Type: Report (Technical Assistance)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Many police officers in the United States are unaware that the problems they encounter with gangs, crime, and social deterioration in large urban centers are similar to those confronted by law enforcement around the world.
Abstract: In Latin America, Eastern and Western Europe, and parts of Asia, law enforcement is having difficulty controlling the gang problem. Frustration and resentments periodically erupt into violent confrontations that shock a country and precipitate bouts of introspection and self-analysis, which are followed by little activity of consequence. The politics of gangs can vary from extreme right-wing groups such as the United States and British skinheads and neo-nazi organizations in Germany to the extreme left groups in Latin America, Europe, and Korea. At the root of much of the criminal activities of gangs is the extremely high rate of unemployment among ethnic minorities. Gang activity becomes the most effective strategy for short-term survival for many impoverished and disenfranchised youth. Many otherwise law- abiding residents of marginalized communities become dependent, due to economic desperation, on the money flowing from successful gang activity and therefore are passively resistant to police agencies. Controlling gang problems will depend largely on social and political factors beyond the control of police agencies. Nevertheless, law enforcement must fulfill its responsibilities, be sensitive to the concerns and problems of immigrant and minority communities, be fair in dealing with them, and must recruit members from these communities.
Main Term(s): Gangs
Index Term(s): Gang Prevention; Juvenile gang behavior patterns; US/foreign comparisons
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