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Keep Child Safe in the Neighborhood

Updated on December 8, 2015
brakel2 profile image

Helping others through her research and writing meets an important goal for Audrey. She has spent many hours on this goal in her career.

Keeping a child safe in the neighborhood is vital to everyone. Parents can teach their children the steps to success. A mother worried about her eight-year-old who walked some distance from the school bus to his home. Another mother said she trusts her nine year old child and considers him safe walking in the area, while others in the group were hesitant. She felt that way, because she believes family members abduct more children than do strangers. Many thoughts come to mind while considering an answer to the safety of children. Stay tuned to learn the elements to consider when deciding the steps to success.

Walking to School

This young boy walks to school by himself.
This young boy walks to school by himself. | Source

This hub is based on a question about how old a child should be to walk alone from a school bus to his distant home. This question brings up many issues to consider. How can you keep a child safe in the neighborhood? Learn the answers here.

Steps to Success

Sixty years ago, life was different and children were safer. School buses did not exist, and children walked everywhere, often unaccompanied. Nowadays, kidnappings, molestations, and other crimes occur. They may be in the minority, but precautions are primary. Parents must consider the following in making a decision about what age any child may walk safely in the neighborhood.

Deciding factors

Maturity and common sense of child - If a child is mature, and parents have taught precautions and common sense, it might be feasible for him to walk in the neighborhood. He needs to know safe places to go if the need arises. - a neighbor, library, store, gas station and then he can call a parent. Carrying a cell phone to alert the parents of any concern is important.. Parents might instruct him to call home, when he safely arrives at his destination.

Size of area - Parents must consider if they live in a town or large city and evaluate safety in that area. The crime rate in the city is usually higher.

Crime rate in the area - If a child lives in a high crime area, it might not be safe for him to walk in that neighborhood by himself. He might need someone to take him to and from his destination. Someone can meet him at the school bus.. A mom from the website "circle of moms.com" lived in a nice neighborhood where two children were stolen. One was playing in the yard with a friend, and one was walking with a friend. For these reasons, she is opposed to young children walking by themselves. Usually, safety in numbers works, but in this case,tragedies resulted.

Parental education -It is imperative that parents educate children about precautions and practice walking the areas that the child would walk to scope the situation. Teaching how to avoid strangers and their cars and about crossing streets are musts for teaching a child safety.

Know your neighborhood - Families can join a neighborhood association. If there is none, parents should be aware of the makeup the neighborhood and any persons who could be a danger to the child. They need to check the sex crimes list to be alert to anyone who might live in the area. In most communities talking to neighbors usually results in details of the neighborhood.

Know your child's friends and parents and their phone numbers - It is vital to know where your children are and all the contact information about the friends.



The Glamour of the City Conceals High Crime Rate

New York City has some bad crime areas. It does not appear so from this picture.
New York City has some bad crime areas. It does not appear so from this picture. | Source

Keep Child Safe Crossing Street

Child safety on streets is important
Child safety on streets is important | Source

Statistics and legalities

A reputable website "livingstreets.com" advises as follows: "There is no law prohibiting children from being out on their own at any age. It is a matter of judgment for parents to decide when children can play out on their own, walk to the shops or school." The Department of Justice gives the following statistics: Nearly 800,000 children younger than 18 are missing each year, or 2,185 each day. More than 200,000 abductions were by family members and more than 58,000 abductions were by non family members.

Conclusion

As you can see, the question is not easy to answer, as it depends on various factors. The fear factor enters the question because of publicized cases, school violence, and abductions. The chances of a child being abducted walking in the neighborhood is probably very slim. No parent wants to take a chance, especially if he is aware of an incident. Cases like the abduction and recovery of Elizabeth Smart are on the minds of everyone. All parents can do is follow the above guidelines, to keep their child safe and realize that other factors are out of their control. Children are precious commodities, and hopefully, most parents are cautious about considering the maturity of the child. The sun rises and sets for the children. They are like little rays of sunshine. Hope for safety for all the little ones will remain in the hearts and minds of parents forever.

Information from the Dept Of Justice

Missing children in US every year,
Missing children in US every year,

Comments

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    • brakel2 profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Selig 

      3 years ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Kids are lucky Peachy when school buses drop them near or in front of their house. When I was little, I had to walk to school, but things used to be safer. Nowadays, everything is different. We just pray for the safety of all the children. May your children by safe. Blessings, Audrey

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 

      3 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      our kids are always in the school bus, never walking alone on the streets. There are too many accidents and kidnapping and rapist on the road, who knows what happen next

    • brakel2 profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Selig 

      5 years ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Thanks for reading my hub and commenting. Whatever we can do to keep our kids safe is important. Cell phones and other programs help with protection. Concerned parents are part of the steps to success. Take care Rpenaf

    • brakel2 profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Selig 

      5 years ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Hi Angela Thanks so much for reading my article. It is frightening these days about the threats to children and concern for safety. The kidzone sounds like a wonderful place to register your children. I will definitely look into it. You are right that constant worry is not healthy for kids or parents. I will check out the site you mentioned and use it in my article, if I can. Good luck to you and your family. I know you are a concerned parent.

    • Rpenafiel profile image

      Rpenafiel 

      5 years ago from United States

      @Angela Smith - I agree with you Angela. The world is not as safe as the day that our grandparents roamed before. There is no such thing as a “safe place” today and perhaps it is better to be paranoid parents than ignoring the facts. More and more crimes are rising, targeting the younger generation because they are easily threatened and manipulated by crooked minds. Keeping them safe should always be our top priority and luckily manufacturers (device) and organizations are manufacturing and formulating preventive measures and device to ensure our kid’s safety. Mobile phone is like a staple need nowadays and it is also one of the obvious devices that can be transformed into a life saving device in times of emergency. More and more applications are being offered in the market today to help with the “Keeping child safe” notion. We are thankful for devices like Just5, and apps like SafeKidZone. Bravo!

    • profile image

      Angela Smith 

      5 years ago

      Many parents go from worry to worry, never stopping long enough to see that their children are prevailing through life’s challenges day in and day out. We worry about lots of things. We may be worried that the kids will fall down and hurt themselves, kids being bullied at school, kids being abducted or kidnapped by strangers. Being worry all the time is unhealthy to the parents and to the kids. So I've decided that the best way to protect my family is to have them registered to SafeKidZone. It's a panic button application installed on my phone that whenver they're in trouble they will just press it and it will simultaneously alert their loved ones and the 24/7 call center that they need help and if needed, the call will be routed to the nearest 911 in their area. You can visit their site and you will find more of their interesting features http://safekidzone.com

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