With spring approaching, I want to talk about something very important to me as both a mother and a police officer, and that's the safety of our children. As parents we're always wondering, "Is my child safe when I'm not around?" *
The first step is to have a safety plan for your child. Parents need to teach their children how to protect themselves from abductors, no matter how scary it is to talk about.
Nine out of ten children will freeze when faced with a threatening situation, because they have never been taught what to do. Practicing basic safety techniques will give your children the tools they need in a crisis situation. The best approach is to make your safety plan meaningful and fun, too.
When I teach a "Children Escaping Abduction" (CEA) class (one of our "Safety 1st 4Kids" programs), I always ask kids whether they've practiced the Stop, Drop & Roll approach to fire safety. Almost all of them have. Try the same fun approach and practice the CEA technique (see below) with your child.
There's a Free CEA Safety Open House April 15 at 6:30 pm at Police headquarters: 11445 Johns Creek Parkway, Johns Creek, GA 30097. Please bring your children and come and learn about CEA. Must reserve space by contacting Kathy Shiplett at 678-474-1561 or Kathy.Shiplett@JohnsCreekGA.gov.
Also, I highly recommend Safe Side's video. It is a fun video for children.
* In 2007, according to the National Crime Information Center, 518 children (18 and under) were abducted by strangers; 2,919 children were abducted by a non-custodial parent; and 299,787 children were reported as runaways.
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