What your children should know about stranger danger
Are all strangers bad people? No. Your children need to know this. But they also need to know that because we don’t know a stranger, we must be careful how we deal with them. Here are some rules that will help your children make wise decisions about their safety with strangers. There is a lot of information here, so it is better to discuss one area at a time with your children.
Being careful with strangers
Do not talk to strangers. Talking to them makes it easier for them to trick you. Say “go ask an adult”. This is not being rude, it is being safe.
Do not tell a stranger your name and address. It is none of their business.
Keep your distance from a stranger. You do not want them to get close enough to grab you. At least two arms lengths is a good rule of thumb. No one has the right to touch you or make you feel uncomfortable. Yell “No!” It is your right. Tell your parents as soon as possible if this happens.
Never accept a gift, candy, or anything from a stranger. Tell your parents if a stranger offers you something.
Never help a stranger if they ask you to find a lost dog, cat, or anything. This is likely to be a trick. Grown-ups who need help should ask other grown-ups.
Never help a grown-up with directions. Again, grown-ups should ask grown-ups for help.
Never go near a car with a stranger in it. Don’t get in any car without your parents permission. If a car stops near you, do not go near it.
Never go anywhere with a stranger, even if they say they know your parents. Your parents would never ask a stranger to pick you up.
Being careful outside
Don’t walk around alone, try to stay with friends, parents, or other relatives.
When you are out in public, make sure your parents can always see you.
Do not take short cuts through bush/park lands or down dark alleys. Stay on the heavily traveled streets, where there is lots of activity. Stay away from places where there are no people around.
Be alert to your surroundings. If you have your music blasting away on the iPod, it is hard to stay alert.
If you sense trouble
If someone is following you or chasing you, go to where there are lots of people and lots of bright lights. Bad guys don’t want witnesses. Run to a police station, fire station, a trusted neighbors house, or somewhere your parents say is safe.
Run away as fast as you can if you sense danger. It is better to run than to try to fight an adult who is three times your size. Strike, kick, scratch, and bite if you have no other choice.
If someone grabs you, yell at the top of your voice “I don’t know this person”.
Scream. Your voice is your best weapon. This will draw attention to the bad guy. Bad guys do not like attention.
Trust that little voice inside you that says “something about this person is not right”. The little voice is rarely wrong.
Kids home safety
Know your home/parents phone number and your address. Also know how to call emergency.
Never answer the door alone. Make sure your parents are in the room if you answer it.
Never tell a phone caller your name or address. If you are home alone, tell them your parents are busy and will call them back. Never, ever tell them you are alone.
Martial arts can help
Martial arts can give kids a last line of defence against attackers, but their best defence is being smart about stranger danger. Help your children to be smart by taking the time to make sure they understand these important rules.
Top Twenty Kids Stranger Danger Tips for Child Safety is an original article by Sensei Matt Klein