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Once a young person is in a gang it can be really difficult to persuade them to leave. Other gang members will put a lot of pressure on them to stay and they might not even want to leave their new "family" behind. There may also be the risk of violence if they do try to walk away.
You could start by talking about all the dangers of being in a gang with your child and point out the unglamorous sides of membership.
Then let them know that you'll back them all the way in escaping from the gang and agree how they are going to go about it. It's important to keep talking, even if you're worried about what they're doing when they're not at home.
There are lots of places that you can get help and support, including your child's school and other parents who are in the same situation.
You can also call our 24-hour helpline on 0808 800 5000 or
We'll give you information and advice and be able to direct you to specialist agencies near you who can help, and you can be completely anonymous.
- St Giles Trust – a national charity dedicated to helping offenders to escape from crime.
- Safer London Foundation – a London-based organisation which aims to prevent crime, support victims and create safer communities.
- One Big Community – a youth-led London organisation whose aim is to end gang violence.