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This Gang Awareness Message is from Michael Leonard, Criminal Justice Consultant.


Message for Youth

What preventive steps can Youth take to help avoid possible risk of gang membership?

Hanging out with the wrong friends can get you to not perform well in school, because gang lifestyles do not value or promote the educational process.

Youth should avoid:
  • Involving yourself in purchasing alcohol/drugs of any kind (including beer and Marijuana)
  • Going shoplifting and friends that you know shoplift
  • Any type of gang fighting or bullying of any kind
  • Being unkind to people that groups dislike
  • Writing gang names, symbols or related graffiti on books, papers, bodies, or walls
  • Getting into arguments that do not involve you
  • Signing onto gang websites that ask you for personal information
  • Poor decision-making perpetrated by gang affiliation
  • Gang initiations
  • Joining a gang because it makes you a dependant rather than an independent thinker

Steps youth can take to promote positive peer pressure:

Youth should:

  • Involve yourself in supervised positive group activities in school, in church and in the community
  • Stick to curfews that are set by your parents or guardian
  • Choose friends that have rules similar to yours.  Example: curfews
  • Get a mentor in your career choice or field of interest
  • Become a mentor to a younger child
  • Stay away from where gangs are to hang out
  • Participate in family gatherings and gather with family often
  • Always let parents or guardians know whereabouts and times of travel along with arrival times. They are your best defense if ever questioned by police about possible committed crimes.

Interested in a presentation to your business, church, civic group or classroom?

You can reach Michael Leonard Sr. at his email address


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Michael Leonard - Criminal Justice Consultant - Brooklyn, NY

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