Guide Street gang patterns and policies

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She has directed research on regional, national and international gang issues and studies juvenile delinquency and violence, street gangs, and juvenile justice policy and programs. Street Gang Patterns and Policies provides a crucial update and critical examination of knowledge about gangs and major gang control programs across the nation. Malcolm Klein and Cheryl Maxson here focus on gang proliferation, migration, and crime patterns, and highlight known risk factors that lead to youths joining gangs and to gang formation within communities. Dispelling long-standing assumptions that the public-and the media and law enforcement-have about street gangs, they present a comprehensive overview of how gangs are organized and structured.

The authors assess the major gang programs across the nation, and argue that existing prevention, intervention and suppression methods, targeting individuals, groups, and communities, have been largely ineffective, when evaluated. Klein and Maxson close by offering policy guidelines for practitioners on how to intervene and control gangs more successfully. Filling an important gap in the literature on street gangs and social control, this book will be a must read for criminologists, social workers, policy makers, and criminal justice practitioners. Read more Read less.

Review "This is an important book. Klein and Maxson, based on a masterful review of the empirical literature on gangs and on gang intervention efforts, lay out a balanced and comprehensive strategy for confronting this problem head-on. Neither falsely optimistic nor unnecessarily gloomy, they provide a road map that, if followed, will yield substantial progress in our fight against gangs.


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No customer reviews. Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review. We can say with great confidence that gang membership increases criminal behavior—there are scores of studies with rigorous methodology that lend support to such as conclusion. However, not all gang members are criminals and not all criminals are gang members. That is, we know a lot about how rates of criminal behavior are higher between gang and non-gang populations as well as how this behavior changes upon entering and existing gangs.

Yet little is known about distinguishing high-rate gang offenders from low-rate gang and from non- offenders. The message here is that research on terrorism and radicalization should assess risk carefully and assign interventions accordingly.

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Indeed, following the conclusions John Monahan reached on terrorism risk assessment is a good pathway forward,[27] but issues of over- and under-identification will remain problematic. Ninth: understand the network of opposition underpinning extra-legal groups. Gangs are oppositional groups that thrive on enemies and conflict, real and constructed.


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  • Indeed, no gang could survive without a rival. There is a reason that it is almost impossible to find a city with only one gang. Conflicts and enemies spawn an oppositional culture — a culture in which defeating enemies is more important than achieving goals. Without such elements of an oppositional culture, gangs could not exist. This oppositional aspect of gangs has a direct referent to groups that engage in terrorist activities. The symbols, activities, and causes of radicalized groups reflect their oppositional nature.

    Tenth: there is a need for theory making and theory testing. Where advances have been made in the study of gang worlds, these reflect equilibrium between theory making and theory testing. Any tilt in the scales will either lead to the over- or under-abundance of ideas that will advance the literature. Rather, they are either undemonstrated, non-demonstrable, or actually demonstrated to be in error. The survey and longitudinal research revolution in the social sciences in the s and s set in motion an explosion of gang research actually, gang member research based on many of the ideas and theories found in the fieldwork and theories of prior decades.

    Eleventh: pay close attention to the role of prison.

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    This is an area of gang research that needs development in method, theory and policy. Access to inmates is often not easy and even when authorities cooperate with research, subjects are often reluctant to be interviewed. It is well-established that the disorganized street gang member comes out of prison with more discipline, having been a member of a more organized gang in prison. The structure of prison gangs and the development of well-disciplined roles in such groups elevate gang members and their gang to a different, more organized state. We know that while in prison, gang members change both behavior and attitudes.

    In the U. Such links between the street and the prison, the prison and the street are important mechanisms of the transmission of motives, methods and radicalized beliefs. Twelvth: comparative research will offer greater returns to knowledge than research conducted in isolation. A special emphasis should be placed on the emergence of groups and cultures and how they each differ in form and function. The field of public health inquires whether close contact is required for the transmission of disease. Do gangs and extremist group spread through direct contact with other gang members or extremists or are there some alternative dissemination mechanisms?

    This was a key issue for gang researchers in the s and s when gang activity expanded greatly across the United States. It was necessary to determine whether gangs were franchising into new territories or whether gang symbology was being adopted by marginalized youth. These very questions are of unquestionable import to the study of terrorism, radicalization, and extremism, especially with the increasing importance placed on the movement of extremist persons e. By its nature research on terrorism and extremism is comparative and crosses state boundaries, yet a comparative research agenda is ripe for addressing questions that reach the very core of the study of extra-legal groups.

    The gang world has only recently embarked on such an agenda with the emergence of the important Eurogang research platform. There are many points of divergence between the study of, and response to, gangs and groups involved in terrorism. That said, the points of overlap are so substantial that it would be disappointing not to learn from the successes and the many failures of gang research.

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    These include characteristics of the individuals involved, the groups and their activities. Together this would provide a collection of ideas and theory and a core methodological basis to study them. It took gang research nearly years to reach a semblance of a solid base of scientific knowledge. Malcolm Klein lamented that it took gang research too long to get there and that this process would have been hastened with greater loyalty to a comparative research agenda.

    The threat of extremism and terrorism is too great to ignore the success or repeat the missteps of gang research, practice, and policy. About the Authors: Scott H. Decker is also an active and contributing member of the Eurogang Research Group. David C. His research focuses primarily on gangs and criminal networks, violence, and developmental and life-course criminology.

    We are grateful to the helpful comments of the reviewers and Paul Gill, co-editor of this issue of Perspectives on Terrorism.

    Longitudinal Perspectives on Adolescent Street Gangs

    Errors and shortcomings remain the province of the authors. Decker and David C. Horgan Howell Menacing or mimicking? Realities of youth gangs, Juvenile and Family Court Journal , 58 2 , ; see, for an international comparative take on gangs and violence, Scott H. In Glenn McDonald Ed. Youth Justice Board for England and Wales. Pyrooz and Meghan M. Pyrooz Eds. The Handbook of Gangs. New York: Wiley , forthcoming.

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    Thrasher , The gang: A study of 1, gangs in Chicago. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Short Jr. Short, Jr. Huebner, Kimberly Martin, Richard K. Moule Jr, David C. Pyrooz, and Scott H. Please check your course details in your online delivery method, such as Canvas. Department of Education, programs offered in whole or in part through telecommunications, otherwise known as distance education or correspondence are ineligible for Federal Direct Loans. This also includes scenarios where students who take distance education courses outside of their loan period and pay for them with their own funding, and attempt to apply for future Federal Direct Loans.

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