Talking with kids about strangers

With all the talk in the news, it is important to keep your child safe by teaching them about stranger danger. The following tips can help protect your child’s safety in a dangerous situation.

First off, your child needs to understand the difference between a “good” stranger and a “bad” stranger. Not all unknown people are necessarily bad or dangerous.

Examples of a “good” stranger  may include police officers, security guards, teachers, store clerks, etc. These are all examples of people to turn to if a child is ever lost, scared, threatened or if they think someone might be following them.

If a child is ever approached by a “bad” stranger who tries to lure or pull them away, the best thing to do is get the attention of other adults; whether that is by running to the nearest home or making enough noise to be heard by someone. The vast majority of adults will help a child in danger.

Other tips for kids include knowing your name, address and phone number in case you get lost. Use the buddy system to avoid walking alone. Trust your instincts if you feel you are being followed and seek help immediately. Try to remember the license plate number of the vehicle following you and tell it to a trusted adult. If a stranger approaches you, do not speak to them, no matter what they tell you. Just keep walking.

And if a stranger does grab you, do everything you can to stop them from pulling you away or dragging you to their car. Try to attract attention to yourself and yell “this is not my mom” or “this is not my dad!”

Adopted from Teaching Children About Stranger Danger

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