Introduction members were female. Female adolescents that are in


For this essay the issue I
will be discussing is about female gang. I will be focusing on the impact of
being in female gangs, the risks of being in a female gang and the consequences
faced when being in a female gang, the practice issues I will be focusing on is
analysing female gangs and comparing female and male gang. This topic is
important because it’s a current policy issue because the media portraits
females as to be more elegant and now females are now participating in gangs,
it displays female is violent behaviour, it also shows how female are becoming
equal to boys it illustrates why female join gangs and female gang is

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Main body

Female gang is a significant
issue throughout the years women are becoming equal to boys in regards to
gangs. Since 2009 there has been a rise by 250,000 in female gangs statistics
show that women are less involved to be in gangs in 2013 (Peacock, 2018)  over
160,000  female adolescents and women
were arrested due to violent attacks. The proliferation of female gang
involvement is a growing concern to the public and society (Wingood et al., 2002)  most
concentrate on males and assuming that females did not involve themselves in
masculine act, violence. In recent years the prevalence of female gangs have
been substantial national surveys were conducted by (Wingood et al., 2002) it was estimated that by 8% and 11% gang members
were female. Female adolescents that are in gang relation have associated
themselves in participation health- consuming behaviors including violence,
drug abuse and alcohol abuse. Self-report was conducted by (Wingood et
al.,2002) which estimated the risk behaviors and outcomes about female in gangs
it was resulted that when females are involved in  gangs females their more equal to boys
because they are more associated with weapons and drugs. Social network theory
by (Durkheim, 1895)   Social network
theory would be a useful theory to understand the relationship among gang
members and their high risk of behaviors social network theory (Durkheim, 1895)
is designed to examine the impact of social groups  and network in which a person is involved.

However prosocial network increase the like hood of
conforming behavior, anti- social behavior increase the like hood of
anti-social behavior overall according to (Wingood et al.,2002) females that
are involved in gangs are more likely  
to engage in anti-social behavior studies also show that females
involved in gangs are more likely to be engaged in physical violence within
6months. Research has also shown that drugs and alcohol help improve self-image
when being in a gang and blunting emotional and physical pain. According to
(Sutton, 2017) youth members that join gangs find it an attractive way of
fulfilling their practical and emotional needs there are four theoretical
perspectives among female gangs  social-ecological
perspective, social learning theory. Social-ecological (Bronfenbrenner, 1915)
examines the influences and the interactions of various social systems
including individual, family, peer, school when determining risk and protective
factors of gang involvement.

Female involved in gangs are faced with
vulnerabilities because men that are involved with females in gangs, females
are seen as unequal because females are unable to do what a man can do when
being in a gang. In a gang men would use weapons such as knives for violence
and self-protection however females are unlikely to carry weapons women gain
power and respect, feeling important and having others fear them because they
are in a gang (Sutton, 2017) the motivate of women joining gangs is to make
money, need for protection and safety for violent homes and neighborhoods.
There are many risks when joining a gang which include mental health issues,
low self-esteem, feelings of isolation and high risk of sexual activity and
substance use (Sutton, 2017) also most females join gangs because they feel
lack of parental involvement and family conflict so being part of a gang makes
female gang members feel that they have a parental role because there is
someone always to guide them and someone who plays the parental role. Moreover
female gang members who are involved in gangs find family attachment and love
among themselves (Sutton, 2017) theories such as feminism (Falls, 1848) form an
understanding the ways which victimization shapes in female involvement in

When joining a gang it can be very risky for a
female most females that join gangs experience abuse at home they also feel
rejected and do not feel safe in their community so they turn to gangs to
fulfil their needs such as belonging to a family and they feel safe because
that’s the only protection that there have (Sutton, 2017) females are likely to
perceive resources they find gang membership a survival in context of abuse and
hardship. One of the main reasons why female join gangs is because they have
lack of economic opportunities, poverty, abuse and violent in neighborhood (Sutton,
2017) females are equal to join gangs for fun, for protection or because a
friend is involved. There are new legislation (, 2018) that have occurred
to widen the scope of gang injections including drug related drug dealing and
gang relation 

view this as grounded in sexiest beliefs of women as passive, obedient, weak
and dependent on a man even when it comes to involvement in crime.  Feminist have also argued that history has
been constructed through a masculine narrative of crime within the traditional
theories of criminology the main focus has been on male offenders there has
been statistical evidence to show that men are overwhelming perpetrators of
crime these (Marsh and Melville, 2006). Furthermore there’s
also been one dimensional view of female criminality

Other theories such as social control (Hirschi, 1969) argue that everyone
has the ability to break the law there are key elements to female joining gangs
is because people not being tied to the right peers and if a person was raised
surrounding negative influences in their lives and participating in criminal
activities and gangs this is what they know throughout their lives. 

 Strain theory by (Merton, 1938)
suggest that the main cause of gang involvement is because wealth and power are
allocated disproportionately between economic classes which leaves lower
economic classes feeling frustrated in not being able to achieve their goals
and strain of having opportunities which later on leads them to participate in
criminal activities.

Social control theory ( Bandura,1977) argue that the main reason of females
participating in gang relation is because they conduct themselves in illegal
manner because all they know is criminal behaviour because that’s what they
have been taught the criminal behaviour is learned through different
interactions with people who are not linked to criminality. 

Demonic theory the reason for females (Marsh and Melville, 2006) being
involved in criminal behaviour is because there controlled by something that is
demonic in them (witchcraft) that is controlling them for them to act like this
however demoniacs believe that there in league with the devil, who in return
for their loyalty, granted them with supernatural powers which they used to
cause death and make female act out of character and cause destruction within
the society.  Females involved in
criminal behaviour are seen as evil and its unnatural they link to a religion
believing that there’s a spirit in them that is making them act deviant.          

In this research face to face interviews were conducted most females responded
they are attracted to the bad boy image and how there is many luxury benefits (,
2018) lack of role model and very low self esteem can push girls into join
gangs. Education can also be affected by when having involvement in gangs
(, 2018) because you lack motivation is learning
and instead of going to school you start to participate with gang related
activities including staying in a trap house doing drugs, selling drugs  and associating with violence and criminal
activities. When being in a gang many females will agree to have intercourse
with males because they believe its way of males showing their love to them,
male gang members will not accept no as an answer because the female gang
members would be faced with harsh consequences because the males would always
have power over them. Furthermore male gang members will allow his friends to
also have sexual intercourse with other female gang members between August 2010
and October 2011 16,500 have been high risk of sex exploitation by gang

Family and communities are also affected when gang related activity is
involved however if a female gang member wants to leave the gang they are seen
as weak and consequences also occur such as females are unable to go to certain
area’s because they will be associated with violence also there family members
are also at risk in regards to gang relation because if the female member
disagrees to do what the gang member says then there families have to pay the

Sometimes when being in a gang females get pregnant to hold onto the male
gang members believing that the male gang member will provide for her and stick
by her. Many gang members argue that females should be aware of the risks when
being in a gang whilst having a child, a child grows up and learns behaviours
from their parents and also begin to follow their parent’s roots and footsteps
which come normalised to them. As a result many researchers felt that children
are likely to become involved while growing up because they have been influenced
by their parents.

Criminologist  (Sutherland, 1939)
developed Differential Association theory (Sutherland, 1939) believed that the
main reason why people become deviant is because they are exposed to bad
attitudes and influences which later on leads them to commit crime.

When joining the gang life it is a distraction from education (,
2018) many female gang members wouldn’t see education as an opportunity or life
chance. Men use girls as a privilege when being a gang because they are asked
to hold weapons and guns for the men this is because in a gang females are seen
as dominate and easy furthermore police would find it difficult to identify who
is involved on criminality . Females are exposed to sexual exploitation when
being in a gang this can be used as weapons for retaliation many girls are
forced to sleep with many guys to initiate them to the gang life
(, 2018). In regards to safeguarding government
have put policies (, 2018) to prevent sexual exploitation including local
safeguarding, local authorities, police forces and other agencies to identify




As a result It is clear that women are capable of deviant behaviour recent
statistics indicate that involvement in women crime is increasing and female
gangs are under researched to conclude females are still joining gangs
furthermore when females are join gangs they do not look at the risk they look
at the beneficial side of it such as money, jewelry and feeling like their in
power, there are many theories which explain that involvement of female in
gangs but female gangs is still continuing and many have become victims of rape
and sexual exploitation. Policy practices can be improved by ensuring that
local authorities need to ensure that they provide effective support to prevent
female gang also making sure that gang related schools are open for support.