In light of the Jessica Ridgeway, Autumn Pasquale and other child abduction stories making national headline news in October of this year it is prudent to follow some child safety tips from police this Halloween.
Parker Police Department is recommending that parents accompany their children while they trick or treat this year, or make sure they are accompanied by a trusted adult.
They are also encouraging parents to follow the following tips in order to assure a safer holiday outing for their loved ones if they choose not to celebrate at home, church or school instead.
- Teach children to never approach a vehicle, occupied or not, unless they know the owner and are accompanied by a parent or guardian.
- Teach children to never enter a home without prior permission from their parents or guardians.
- Teach children never to approach a home that is not well lit both inside and outside.
- Teach children if anyone tries to grab them to make a scene: loudly yell this person is not my father/mother/guardian and to make every effort to get away by kicking/screaming/resisting.
Halloween child abductions are not the only child safety issue to be concerned about on Oct. 31 according to the Joplin Globe, which points out that auto accidents are the biggest threat during the trick-or-treating holiday.
Children wearing costumes without some type of reflector affixed to them can pose a traffic safety danger as can children who walk on the roadways instead of sidewalks.
Between 2006 and 2010 there were 16 deaths on Halloween night due to motor vehicle incidents involving trick-or-treaters. Parker Police Department encourages parents to avoid their child becoming such a fatality by making sure all children wear reflective clothing or carry a glow stick or flashlight.
In addition, they urge parents to teach children to look both ways before crossing streets, to use established crosswalks and to make sure their child can see clearly if they are wearing a face mask.
For youth who may be spending their Halloween indoors on the Internet, eating candy provided by mom and dad, the FBI cautions that predators online exist too.
To protect youth in that arena the federal law enforcement agency has created a new cyber safety website. The website, FBI SOS (Safe Online Surfing), is an effort to get teachers involved in educating youth about online safety through the creation of six virtual islands to be explored.
Youth don’t have to wait on a teacher to get on board, however, as the website can be accessed from students’ homes right now, in time for Oct. 31. And what safer place for your kids to be on trick-or-treat night than in their own home surfing an FBI website–and eating candy you gave them?