Could your child be involved in a gang: Signs and behaviours to look out for

As anITV News investigation reveals criminal gangs are using large numbers of children to carry drugs between UK cities, here are some warning signs which could indicate your child is involved in a gang.

According to the charity, Only Cowards Carry, the behaviours and signs include:

  • Withdrawing from the family

  • Secretive behaviour

  • Blocking family and friends on social media

  • Unexplained injures

  • Not sticking to agreed times to come home when they go out

Parents may become aware of their child not sticking to curfews. Credit: PA
  • Going missing from home

  • New expensive clothes or other items

  • Large sums of money that can’t be accounted for

  • Aggressive or difficult behaviour

  • Arriving in taxis or unknown vehicles

Noticeable changes in a child's behaviour at school could be a warning sign.
  • New friends that you do not know

  • Truanting or long term absences from school

  • Showing a lack of respect towards peers and teachers

Is the child constantly receiving calls and wanting to leave quickly? Credit: PA

Although helpful, these signs alone do not automatically indicate a child is in a gang. Changes in behaviour or attitudes could be due to a phase or just being a "teenager" among other things.

However, if you have any cause for concern talk to the child or young person to determine if there really is a problem.

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