Educating children about safety is an ongoing task and you should take an active role to communicate this information with them. Always have a plan for your children--what they will do in specific situations, who they should call, and where they should go. Play "what if" games asking what they will do. If you communicate this information, then they are less likely to "freeze" if their safety is jeopardized because they have already thought about what they are supposed to do!
Children Should Know
- Full name, address, and phone number
- Names of parents, where they work, and their phone numbers
- How and when to call 911 from home, cell phones, and payphone. Push the "send" button on cell phones, listen to the operator, speak clearly, answer any questions, and don't hang up until the operator says to.
- Call 911 for a police officer or fire fighter when someone is hurt badly, a child is lost, a strange person approaches them, or they believe someone else is trying to hurt them.
- Safe houses they can go to in case of an emergency. Walk around your neighborhood with your child and point out houses and people they can turn to for help.
- Tell a trusted adult or yell "help police" immediately if they are scared. Trust instincts - you do not always have to be polite, but you do always have to be safe.
- No one has the right to touch them in private areas (those normally covered by a bathing suit). They should understand what inappropriate touching is and tell a trusted adult or police if this occurs.
- Not to keep secrets from parents and that if someone does something to make a child feel uncomfortable, they should immediately tell a trusted adult who will understand and not blame them.
- Never go anywhere alone. Be certain someone knows where they are going.
- Always walk tall, look strong, stay alert, and don't look like a victim. Be aware of who is around you and walk with confidence.
If a Child is Home Alone
- Know what to do if someone knocks on the door.
- Know what to do if someone wants to use your telephone.
- Know what to do if someone calls.
- Parents should teach children what to do in specific situations?
If a Person Tries to Lure or Grab a Child
- Never approach a stranger in a vehicle. Adults don't need "help" from a child to find lost animals, get directions, etc.
- If they try to grab you, yell! "Help police!" "This is not my parent!"
- Fight - kick, scratch, bite, spin, wiggle, drop your weight to the ground - anything to get away and cause a scene so that others know you need help.
- If trapped in a vehicle, try to leave the seatbelt off so you can get out when it stops.
- Try to remember something about what the person looks like--what they are wearing, any tattoos or scars, where they were last seen, etc.
- Call 911 as soon as possible.
Internet and Social Media Safety
- Set boundaries for internet and social media. Are your kids allowed to "friend" anyone, even those they don't know? Are they allowed to download all apps, or only certain ones?
- Know all of your child's accounts and passwords.
- Keep the computer in a public area of the house where you can monitor it.
- Never give out personal information while on the internet or via apps.
- Be extremely careful! Take the same precautions digitally that you would take if you were communicating in-person. If you don't know them, then you aren't usually going to share much information.
The Redmond Police Department is a proud supporter of Project Child Safe. For information and safety resources, visit ProjectChildSafe.org.