- Children should always go out trick or treating accompanied by a responsible adult. If you have a group of kids going, the parents should choose two or three of them to go along and keep an eye on things.
- Some towns set a curfew for trick or treating which makes it easier for townsfolk to know who’s coming to their door. Make sure and stick to the curfew times and stick to subdivisions and areas with a lot of homes so your kids can get in as much trick or treating as possible in a few hours time.
- Plan a safe route so parents know where their older kids will be at all times. Set a time for their return home. Make sure that your child is old enough and responsible enough to go out by themselves. Make sure that they have a cell phone.
- Let your children know not to cut through back alleys and fields if they are out alone. Make sure they know to stay in populated areas and not to go off the beaten track. Let them know to stay in well lighted areas with lots of people around. Explain to them why it can be dangerous for kids not to do this. If they are going out alone, they are old enough to know what can happen to them in a bad situation and how to stop it from happening.
- Instruct your children not to eat any treats until they bring them home to be examined by you. This way you can check for any problem candy and get the pick of the best stuff!
- Instruct your child to never go into the home of a stranger or get into their car. Explain why this is not a god idea and what to do if someone approaches them and tries to talk to them.
- Make sure your child carries a flashlight, glow stick or has reflective tape on their costume to make them more visible to cars.
- Let them know that they should stay together as a group if going out to Trick or Treat without an adult.
When installed correctly, child safety seats reduce the risk of death in a crash by 71%. Motor vehicle crashes are one of the leading killers of children.
- Children eight years of age or younger must be secured in an approved child restraint system, more commonly called a child safety seat.
- Further, rear-facing child restraint devices must be placed in the back seat of a vehicle.
- In the event the vehicle does not have a back seat, the child restraint device may be placed in the front passenger seat only if the vehicle is either not equipped with a passenger side airbag or the passenger side airbag has been deactivated.
Unlike the safety belt law, the Child Passenger Law is a primary enforcement citation – you can be stopped and ticketed for violating this law without any other violations present.
Dos and Don’ts of Child Safety
- know your telephone number, address, and your parents’ full names: for example, Mary or Joe Smith… not just “mom” or “dad.”
- let your parents know where you are and who you are with. Play with friends, and remember, there is safety in numbers.
- tell your parents who your friends are and where they live… especially new friends and adults you meet.
- tell your parents if someone talks about sex or love.
- tell your parents if someone touches you or asks to take pictures of you. Secrets about bad touches are bad secrets. Tell your parents, teacher, doctor, or some other adult you trust if someone asks you to keep a bad secret.
- accept rides from a strangers or get in their car.
- open a door to a stranger… Never open the door to anyone when you are home alone.
- give information over the phone to someone you do not know.
- tell anyone you are home alone.
- go into a person’s house without your parent’s permission.
- play in isolated places.
Preventing Child Abduction
Around the country, thousands of children are reported missing each year. Some children are found and returned, others return home on their own. Some of our children are never found or returned.
There is nothing that devastates parents, friends, and a community more than a reported child abduction or attempt kidnapping of a child. Child abduction is not only committed by a stranger, it could be committed by someone they know and trust, like a parent.
What Parents Can Do:
- Know where your child is at all times.
- Never leave a small child alone at home or in a car.
- Make sure your child knows his or her full name, address and telephone number.
- Make sure your child know where you work, and that telephone information.
- Know your child’s friends and where they live.
- Teach your child about strangers. Tell him or her to never talk, take candy, or go with a stranger – without your consent.
- Make sure your child knows never to get into a stranger’s car.
- Tell your child that if approached by a stranger, run and scream.
- Let your child know that no one has a right to touch any part of his or her body that a bathing suit would cover.
- Inform your child to report to you, a police officer or school authority, anyone that exposes his or her private parts to them.
- Report to the police immediately, if your child informs you that they were lured or assaulted by a stranger
- Never go to a friend’s home without informing their parents where they are going and when they will return.
- Never talk to strangers.
- Never take candy or gifts from strangers.
- Never wander off when they are with their parents.
- Move away from a car or van that pulls up next to them, if they do not know the driver.
- Scream and run away from any stranger that calls them to a vehicle or attempts to touch them.
- Be suspicious of any stranger asking for assistance.
- Try to remember what the stranger looks like, as well as the vehicle and license plate number.
- Immediately inform parents or police of any strangers that attempt to call them to a car or van.
What the Community Can Do:
- Be aware of all strangers in their neighborhood, especially if they pay undue attention to a child.
- Write down information about strangers in your neighborhood.
- Write down information about strange vehicles in their neighborhood.
- Call the police immediately if someone is screaming or being chased by anyone.