Raising a Street
START WITH THE BASICS
- Make sure your children know their full name, address
(city and state), and phone number with area code.
- Be sure kids know to call 9-1-1 or
"0" in emergencies and how to use a public phone, Practice
making emergency calls with a make-believe phone.
- Tell them never to accept rides or gifts from
someone they and you do not know well.
- Teach children to go to a store clerk, security
guard, or police officer for help if lost in a mall or store or on the
- Set a good example with your own actions-lock
doors and windows and see who's there before opening the door.
- Take time to listen carefully to your
children's fears and feelings about people or places that scare them
or make them feel uneasy. Tell them to trust their instincts.
AT SCHOOL AND PLAY
- Encourage your children to walk and play with
friends, not alone. Tell them to avoid places that could be dangerous
--vacant buildings, alleys, playgrounds or parks with broken equipment
- Teach children to settle arguments with words,
not fists, and to walk away when others are arguing. Remind them that
taunting and teasing can hurt friends and make enemies.
- Make sure your children are taking the safest
routes to and from school, stores and friends houses. Walk the routes
together and point out places they could go for help.
- Encourage kids to be alert in the neighborhood,
and tell an adult - you, a teacher, a neighbor, a police officer-
about anything they see that doesn't seem right.
- Check out the school's policies on absent
children-are parents called when a child is absent?
- Check out daycare and after school
programs-look at certifications, staff qualifications, rules on
parents permission for field trips, reputation in the community,
parent participation and policies on parents visits.
- Check babysitters references.
AT HOME ALONE
- Leave a phone number where you can be reached.
Post it by the phone, along with numbers for a neighbor and emergencies
- police and fire departments, paramedics, and the poison control
- Have your child check in with you or a neighbor
when he or she gets home. Agree on rules for having friends over and
going to a friends house when no adult is home.
- Make sure your child knows how to use the
window and door locks.
- Tell your child not to let anyone into the home
without your permission, and never to let a caller at the door or on
the phone know there's no adult at home. Kids can always say their
parents are busy and take a message.
- Work out an escape plan in case of fire or other
emergencies. rehearse with your children.
Information taken from the
brochure Raising Streetwise kids A parents Guide from the National
Crime Prevention Council