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Keeping our kids safe

Following are some helpful child safety suggestions provided by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, a national resource center for child protection.

Top 5 guidelines for online safety:

  1. Teach your children to never give out identifying information – home address, school name or telephone number – in a public message such as a chat room or bulletin board.
  2. Get to know the Internet and any services your children use.
  3. Set reasonable rules and guidelines for computer use by your children. Discuss these rules and post them near the computer as a reminder. (Visit www.ncmec.org for a suggested list.)
  4. Check out blocking and filtering options.
  5. Be sure to make Internet usage a family activity. Consider keeping the computer in the family room rather than the child’s bedroom.

Top 5 guidelines for child protection:

  1. Know where your children are at all times. Be familiar with their friends and daily activities.
  2. Practice basic safety skills with your children – make an outing to the park or mall into a “teachable” experience in which your children can practice checking in with you.
  3. Be sensitive to changes in your children’s behavior; they are a signal that your should sit down and talk to your children.
  4. Teach your children to trust their own feelings and assure them they have the right to say “no” when they sense something is wrong.
  5. Update identification information including photos and descriptions every six months.

 

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