Leaving a gang

If you’re already involved in gang culture, it’s not too late to get out.

Gang life might seem glamorous – but you’re putting yourself, your life, your future, and even the lives of your family members in danger by being part of a gang.

Some tips to help you leave gang:

  • Try to spend less time with the gang and find friends who are not in gangs.
  • Try to avoid places where you know the gang will be.
  • Speak to someone you trust like a family member, teacher or youth worker.
  • You can contact Gangsline for free advice and support from ex-gang members.
  • You can call the police by dialling 999 for urgent help if you're in danger.
  • Focus on things that you enjoy like sports, music, reading or find new hobbies.
  • You can contact ChildLine and speak to a counsellor in confidence. They can help you find a way to get out.

Gangs and the law
Although there are no laws banning gangs or gang membership, there are laws to prevent the criminal activities linked to gangs.

  • It is illegal to have or carry drugs like cannabis, cocaine and ecstasy.
  • It is illegal to carry any knife if there is intent to use it as a weapon (even if it belongs to someone else).
  • It is illegal to carry or keep a gun without a licence, including fake or replica guns.
  • Police can (and will) search anyone they think may be carrying a gun or a knife.
  • Police and school staff can also search young people for weapons at school.
  • Offenders who are members of a gang could face longer sentences if they have to appear in court.