Gangs targeting teenagers in chicken shops by luring them into drug dealing by giving them fast food

Mail Online | 8/11/2019 | Jemma Buckley Crime Correspondent
Mireille (Posted by) Level 3
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Gangs are recruiting children to deal drugs by luring them with free fast food.

The use of the tactic – known as 'chicken shop grooming' – has seen schools launch campaigns to warn children.

School - Head - Teacher - YouTube - Video

A primary school head teacher has shared a YouTube video highlighting the dangers amid fears the technique is being used at takeaways in the area.

While a separate poster campaign, launched by the London Grid for Learning, tells secondary school students: 'There's no such thing as free chicken! Friends of friends who buy you things often want something in return.'

Poster - London - Grid - Learning - LGfL

The poster was launched by London Grid for Learning (LGfL) - a community of schools and local authorities in the capital.

The group's online safety and safeguarding manager Mark Bentley said: 'In terms of schools or parents who might think this wouldn't happen in this leafy area, chicken shops are legion, and kids like to hit the chicken shop on the way home from school.

'It - Couple - Quid

'It's so easy for them to think, 'oh, I can save a couple of quid', and it's easy to get sucked in.'

Evidence from the Youth Justice Board of England and Wales, submitted as part of an investigation into the UK's knife crime epidemic, shows young people believe those who have been excluded from school and are instead attending 'Pupil Referral Units' are particularly vulnerable to exploitation.

'They - Children - Offer - Food - Chicken

It added: 'They also said that sometimes children are recruited through an offer of food (referred to as chicken shop gangs) and they felt that schools could to do more to keep children in school as it could be a protective factor from gang involvement.'

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