National Institute of Corrections
You are not signed in! To post comments and participate in discussions you need to sign in or create a free account.
Improving Understanding of and Responsiveness to Gang-Involved Girls
NIC News & Updates


National Gang CenterThis National Gang Center Newsletter focuses on gang-involved girls, female delinquency and human trafficking.  The main article about understanding and responding to gang-involved girls summarizes key findings from a National Council on Crime and Delinquency (NCCD) study.  The NCCD study involved interviews with gang-involved girls and key stakeholders and provided several recommendations for service providers and others who want to help gang-involved girls.

Recommendations from the study findings:

Place Intersectionality at the Forefront -  Services should consider the intersectional linkages among participants’ races/ethnicities, genders, classes, citizenship status, gender identities, sexual orientations, and other factors. This can include understanding and acknowledging how these defining characteristics influence the choices, viewpoints, and experiences of young women involved in gangs.

Understand Girls’ Entrenched Lives - Many interview participants were entrenched in lifestyles in which gang involvement was prevalent. As they transition out of gangs, girls need assistance and support in successfully addressing complex relationships with their gang-involved family members, friends, and neighborhoods.

Provide Tailored Services - Many participants decided to exit their gangs because they were pregnant or parenting, which indicates the need for specific services. In addition, as girls transition from gangs, they continue to experience high levels of trauma, need to locate sustainable employment and reliable housing, and may struggle with addiction issues. This information demonstrates the need to offer a range of services and support to young women exiting gangs. Moreover, these resources should be provided to women further into adulthood.

Build on Girls’ Strengths - Service providers and others should use an asset-based approach—such as positive youth development—to recognize and build on girls’ strengths, such as those endorsed by study participants: resiliency, interpersonal skills, intelligence, and independence.

Access the full newsletter


This announcement is available at NIC’s Gender-Responsive News for Women and Girls.  Feel free to forward to friends and colleagues.  Subscribe to the newsletter at

For additional resources on Justice-Involved Women go to NIC’s Women Offenders.

Posted Tue, Dec 27 2016 8:53 AM by Susan Powell


Be the first to comment on this article!
You must sign in or create an account to comment.
Brought to you by:
National Institute of Corrections
U.S. Dept. of Justice | 320 First Street | Washington, DC 20534 | 800.995.6423

This blog is funded by a contract from the National Institute of Corrections, U.S. Department of Justice. Points of view or opinions stated in this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice.