OJJDP released Highlights of the 2009 National Youth Gang Survey at the National Gang Symposium on June 710, 2011. Since 1996, the National Gang Center, through the National Youth Gang Survey (NYGS), has collected data annually for the survey from a large, representative sample of local law enforcement agencies to track the size and scope of the national gang problem.
Based on law enforcement reports, in 2009
The fact sheet contains a trend analysis that reveals several distinctive patterns in the prevalence of gang activity over the 14-year survey period:
Over the 8-year period from 2002 to 2009, the number of jurisdictions with gang problems and the number of gangs increased more than 20 percent, while the number of gang members averaged approximately 750,000. Closer examination of the data covering this period has revealed some important findings with respect to the seriousness of gang activity:
In sum, gangs and their activities remain a serious concern for law enforcement agencies and the public in many jurisdictions across the United States. This new national data reveals that gang violence rates have continued at exceptional levels over the past decade.
To read Highlights of the 2009 National Youth Gang Survey, visit the OJJDP Web site. A more detailed trend analysis of gang activity over the past decade is available on the National Gang Center's Web site.