Gangs on Tribal Lands

Gangs on Tribal Lands

What can be done to curb the growth of Native American youth violence on the Oglala Sioux Reservation in Pine Ridge, South Dakota? (NYT)

Gangs on the Oglala Sioux Reservation in Pine Ridge, South Dakota are being blamed for an increase in vandalism, theft, violence and fear. Imitating urban groups like the Crips and the Bloods, an estimated 5,000 youth on the reservation are now involved with gangs.

But unlike urban gangs where much of the violence is focused around drugs and money, on the impoverished Pine Ridge reservation youths are fighting over scraps, says one tribal leader.

As reported in this New York Times video, Native elders hope to fight the problem on the cultural front – teaching Lakota language and values. Others say increased law enforcement is what’s needed. Whatever the answer, gang violence is altering the texture of life in some of the country’s poorest and most neglected places.

CHANNEL: New York Times

Length: 5:24

Videography by Troy Harvey
Photography by Matthew Williams
Reporting by Erik Eckholm
Produced by Brent McDonald