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Posts Tagged ‘http://www.saferchild.org/prevent.htm’

kids_safety

 

I read about the kind of stories every now and then, lately it has increased; feeling tired of this and getting mad, but at whom?…….

I say …….why? Why am I so unlucky to hear this kind of incidents? One can blame on the society and another can blame on parents; but my question is; if the adults should know better ……. and if they are aware that the world that they are living in is vicious, why don’t they take extra precautions to protect the innocent? Why a parent can’t take care of their children, like the way they were protected by their own parents?? Will we be here if they didn’t do their job well? or are we so busy and casual or do we have more prioritized things in our daily life other than the children we bring in to this world?

 

The worst thing of all is, when the mother or the father of the child, or the step mother or the step father, even an uncle or aunt or just a well known neighbor involves in child kidnapping, raping and murder. How would one beat that kind of a thing? Who are the real culprits? Is it the psychological issues the modern society suffering from? or is it because we are careless about our values and human lives? or should we blame on the moment they acted on impulse? Or ……. is it our fault ……. shouldn’t we think that we should have taken  extra care about every thing which matters to us, including ……. kids?? Even if it’s not our child, don’t you think in a way it matters to all of us, to the society, the safety around us?aren’t humans supposed to be smart and civilized??

 

One day the same thing might happen to us, to our families too, we will be grief stricken for the rest of our lives, any point on pointing our finger at another person (or time – or bad karma) being blind to those four fingers pointing at us? What’s the point?

 

Just one line one need to keep in mind always is that ……. “Safety doesn’t happen by accident”…….

 

Look at these innocent faces and tell me please……. Did it really have to happen to them …….. ? Isn’t it too late for most these kids? How far the materialistic things matter to us than the living things?? Compare human lives with gold or diamonds or what ever we treasure in life …….. How does it go? Can we compare? We can dig gold yet can we bring back a lost life?

 

Questions of mine ……..  endless and will never have pleasant answers I know …… so let’s be aware ……

 

Tips for Parents

Note: These suggestions were adapted from various sources, including local law enforcement and protective agencies, the National Crime Prevention Council, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Gavin de Becker’s “Protecting the Gift”, and our own philosophy of protection. If you have ideas we’ve missed, please tell us!

We have listed many tips and suggestions below. However, an expert in the field of protection told us that parents are wise to keep it simple. If an adult approaches a child for any reason outside of a regular course of events, this expert says, the child should run first and ask questions later. We support that view.

Here are other tips for you, and important lessons that you can impart when appropriate:

 

Teach more than once: Don’t just teach your children once. Start young, teach them again and again — and practice dangerous situations, modifying and adjusting to fit their growing understanding. Teach them how to make an emergency call from a cell phone, a regular phone and a pay phone (they don’t need change to call 911 from a payphone). Identify safe people in malls, stores and on streets. Identify safe places to go and ask for help. Rehearse what to do if they get separated from you, if the doorbell sounds or the phone rings when you aren’t there, or if they get asked for help from an adult (adults do not typically ask for help from children). Don’t hound your children with scary lessons — instead, make the lessons casual and a natural part of conversation. They’ll be much better prepared in case of the real thing. A great way to teach is to pretend that you’re younger and they must teach the rules to you. Then they have to think, and the rules become more than just words.

 

Teach them to trust their instincts. Reassure them again and again that they’re allowed to trust their instincts and to say “no!” to adults who don’t seem quite right (see our page called Teach, Listen, Believe, Respond for more on trusting instincts). If they feel uncomfortable or scared, they don’t have to worry about being careful or polite.

 

“Ratting” on friends: Be wary of teaching your child to not be a tattletale or to not “rat” on a friend. “Ratting” may be the best thing your child can do for a friend. It might also someday save your child’s life. Sometimes “friends” are actually predators. Also teach your children that when they’re weighing whether to break a friend’s confidence, good questions to ask themselves are these: Will someone be killed, physically abused, sexually abused or otherwise injured if I don’t report this information? Does keeping this secret allow someone to engage in self-destructive or illegal behavior? Am I keeping a secret about behavior that seems to me to be wrong, hurtful, unethical or dangerous? Does it haunt me to keep this secret? If I keep this secret, will I wonder later if I could have prevented a tragedy? Am I keeping a secret about behavior that’s harmful to me? Answering “yes” to any of these questions is a signal to your children that breaking the confidence probably is the right thing to do.

 

No” means “No”: Teach your children — from the time they’re old enough to understand language — that “no” means “no.” If they don’t want to be tickled, hugged, stroked or patted, they’re allowed to make the activity stop. All they have to do is say “no” or “stop” and the activity has to stop immediately. The rule must be reciprocal. This means that they have to stop if someone tells them to stop (or even if their pet indicates a desire for them to stop) — and so do their parents. So do siblings, extended family members, friends, teachers, and respected members of the community. Teaching your children this very simple concept from an early age — and making sure that everyone follows it without fail — helps to give them the tools they need to recognize people who don’t accept the “no” or the “stop.” For more, see the signs of dangerous people

 

Give them the words they need: Don’t be afraid to call body parts what they are. Make sure your child knows they’re private — and not to be touched by anyone but the child in private — but that they’re not inherently bad (see our pages on Sexuality & Kids for more). That way, they’ll not be fooled by someone who wants to “play a game” with them or manipulate them into doing something mysterious. If you’re wondering what other adults will think about your child knowing the names of private parts, explain what you’re doing so the child doesn’t get a mixed message from a startled caregiver.

 

Dangerous people don’t have to look bad: Make sure your children know that dangerous people often seem nice and professional looking — and they’re not always adults, nor are they always men. They could be a friend, a baby-sitter, the neighbor who lets them pet her dog, or a child who’s been enlisted to help a predator. They are expert at seeming friendly, safe, helpful, kind, loving and generous. They might ask for help or seem sad or lonely. They might wear a uniform, preach from a lectern, or teach social studies. They might just be passing through, or they might have lived next to you for years. The thing that all dangerous people have in common is a desire to do things that harm your children. The goal is not to terrify your children — in fact, they will be less terrified by knowing that there are things they can do to keep themselves safe. Those things start with becoming aware of their surroundings, learning the signs of dangerous people, learning how to trust their instincts, and learning what to do in dangerous situations. A simple rule to teach your children is that if they are approached by an adult stranger for any sort of help or information, it’s wrong and they should run and tell an adult they trust.

 

Carry a current photo: Always carry a current photo of your child (preferably with you in the picture) in your wallet (this is particularly helpful for fathers or male caregivers). Write down special birthmarks or identifying features.

 

Secure your home.

 
  • Don’t ever leave young children at home alone.
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  • Teach older children to not open the door if you aren’t home. They should never leave home without letting you know.
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  • If you’re out, they should answer the phone without making it obvious that adults aren’t home. If they need help, they must always have numbers to call, or they can call the local emergency number (they should know that no emergency personnel will ever mind coming to help — even if it turns out nothing was wrong).
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  • Always ensure that outside doors, windows and screens are closed and locked before everyone retires for the evening. Consider installing an alarm system, or perhaps attaching decorative bells or wind chimes to the inside of exterior doors. Once you intend to go to sleep, make sure that all bedroom doors are open so you can hear any unusual noises.
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  • Make sure the children’s bedrooms can’t be accessed easily from the outside, and avoid having children sleep in bedrooms that are too far removed from yours.
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  • Always supervise small children when they’re playing outside. For older children, make sure that outside play areas are protected from the street and alley — perhaps by a tall fence with a gate that locks in some fashion (this is also a smart childproofing tactic).
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  • Keep the home well lighted.
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  • Pay attention to people who visit your home, and pay particular attention to how you feel about them. Don’t dismiss any uncomfortable feelings you or your children get. Don’t talk yourself out of them or tell yourself it’s just paranoia. If your children tell you they don’t like someone, listen to them. Often, children are more alert than adults to what their instincts are telling them.
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  • Teach your children about dangerous people, and teach them how to protect themselves. Then, make sure they don’t have to.

No visible names: When out with your children, always know exactly what they’re wearing. Do not write your child’s name on the outside of their coat or shirt (this allows a stranger to use the child’s name as a way to get close). Speak to your child’s caregivers, and make sure they don’t do this on outings, either.

 

Don’t leave the store: Teach your child to not leave the area with anyone, even with the person chosen to help, and to never leave the store to try and find the car.

 

Your child should call for you, then ask for help from a woman: Teach your children to call for you first. You might be just around the corner. Teach them your full name (just calling “Mommy!” might not be helpful). If you don’t respond, they should (without leaving the immediate area) then seek help from a woman – preferably a woman shopping with a child or a female clerk.

 

Carry personal information: Have your older children get into the habit of carrying a card with their name, address, phone number, blood type, any allergies, your work number, and an emergency number — along with enough change for at least two phone calls. Remember: They don’t need change to call 911 from a payphone.

 

Don’t leave your child: Always go with your children to the restroom. Don’t wait outside the door or wander off to another area. Don’t leave your children alone at any public facility, such as toy departments, video arcades or playgrounds, as a convenient “baby-sitter” while you’re shopping — not even just to walk around the aisle. Abductors have been known to frequent these places to gain access to children, and they move very, very quickly once they have your child in their hands.

 

Don’t assume that teen-agers are safe. Teen-agers — girls and boys — are often targeted by sexual predators because they’re heading into puberty. Teens are sexually interesting to predators, but generally not yet strong enough to fight back.

 

Don’t expect your children to protect themselves: Children and teens have a notoriously short attention span. They also have an inherent trust of adults and an inherent desire to please. Just because they might appear to know the rules about leaving with strangers, you shouldn’t expect them to remember the rules, to apply them properly in slightly different scenarios — or to protect themselves if someone tries to grab them. And don’t expect young children (younger than baby-sitting age) to look out for each other. The “buddy system” can simply enable a dangerous person to grab two children instead of one. You are your child’s best protector.

 

Don’t delay: If you do get separated, stay calm and retrace your steps to where you were last with your child. If you don’t see the child, contact the first store person you see, and have them secure all exits. DON’T ALLOW THEM TO MAKE YOU WAIT! Abductors are very fast at getting out the door. Make sure all bathrooms get thoroughly checked – abductors sometimes head there first in order to change a child’s appearance. Have an announcement made over the public address system so that other adults are aware a child is missing. If the child isn’t found right away, call police.

 

Don’t give directions or help: Children should avoid people who ask them for assistance or directions (grown-ups and even older children do not typically ask young children for help).

 

Ask a woman: Lost children should ask for help from a woman, for several reasons. 1. The rule is easy to remember. 2. Children are better off choosing someone than having someone choose them. 3. Women are more likely to stick with children until they’re safe. 4. Women are statistically less likely to be predators. 5. Women are better choices than male security guards, who are frequently hired without proper background checks. Nevertheless, if the chosen woman makes the child feel uncomfortable, the child should have no compunction about immediately choosing someone else.

 

Have a code word: Have a family password or code word that must be given before older children are allowed to leave with someone. Make the password simple and easy to remember, but not something a stranger could easily guess. Abductors are shameless; they will say anything to get your child to leave with them. Make sure your child knows to never leave a store with an unknown (or just met) person unless the person knows the code word. (Dangerous people might, for example, pretend that a parent is sick and needs the child. They’ll pretend to have forgotten the password. That’s hard for children to resist — unless they’re prepared.)

 

It’s OK to say “No!” Children don’t have to explain it, and it’s OK to scream, fight, hit and run if they feel they’re in danger. Make sure your children know you will not be angry at them for behaving this way with any adult (even a relative!) who scares them. Teach them that their safety is your first concern — you can work out misunderstandings later.

 

It’s OK to yell: If a stranger starts leading a child away and tells him (or her) to be quiet, he (or she) should yell as loud as possible. Opinions differ on what to yell. We recommend this: “Help, police! He’s not my father!” (or “Help, police! She’s not my mother!”) (we believe — and an informal survey confirmed it — that these words give another stranger the needed permission to interfere).

 

Just so you know: We disagree with professional advice to yell “Fire” or “Fight” — because they aren’t words that would get US to respond in the desired way. We believe, and our survey confirmed it, that “Fire” might only encourage a chaotic stampede toward the exits (allowing an abductor help in escaping), and “Fight” would cause unhelpful confusion — while possibly not bringing people who would interfere. We also wonder if frightened children would remember to yell words that don’t fit the situation. Ultimately, we suggest that parents teach the phrase that would get them moving toward helping a child who was yelling it in public. For us, that phrase is “Help, police! He’s not my father!”

 

No gifts, no rides, no trips: Children should resist any gifts from strangers (no matter how tantalizing), never get in a vehicle with a stranger, and never go anywhere with a stranger, even for a moment. Talk to police about what your children should do if someone tries to get them into a car by threatening them with a gun, mace, or with a threat against the family. Experts say it’s better to run away from a gun (preferably turning quickly around a corner, behind a building, or into a store) than it is to get in the car. Once the child is in the car, it’s hard — if not impossible — for the child to escape.

 

It’s OK to tell: Children will lie through their teeth if they are convinced it will protect you. Teach your children to always tell a trusted adult (preferably you) about anything that is frightening, confusing, or uncomfortable. If something bad or uncomfortable happens, and they’re told to keep quiet about it, they MUST tell somebody. Make sure they know you will not blame them or think they’re lying or bad (no matter what’s happened). A lifetime of good communication between you and them will help a great deal with this.

 

It’s OK to come home: Abductors might tell children that their parents don’t want them back anymore, or that they’ve died or moved. Make sure your children are prepared for this, and that they absolutely believe that you would love them, accept them and want them back, no matter what happened to them — no matter what they were coerced or enticed into doing.

Teach them to never give up on trying to get away, and to never give up hope that you will find them. (This is one reason, by the way, why we are opposed to disciplining children by threatening to leave them behind in a store. Your children should never think for one second that you would actually give up on them or leave them behind.)

 

Give Your Older Child An Easy Way to Say NO — Many times, children want to say no, but don’t know how. Make a deal with your child: If your child is out with friends and is feeling pressured to do something, he can ask you if he “absolutely has to come home.” Those words will be a signal to you that he needs you to be the bad guy and demand that he comes home right now. But if he’s just having fun and wants to stay out, he can ask you if he “can stay out longer.” Those words will alert you that everything’s OK.

Our little contribution ……. goes a long way ……. please also refer:

http://www.saferchild.org/listen.htm

http://www.saferchild.org/prevent1.htm

http://www.saferchild.org/lost,.htm

http://www.saferchild.org/state.htm

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