This is a guest article by Pina Arcamone, Director of the Missing Children’s Network (Quebec)
As children and their families are getting ready to go trick-or-treating, the Missing Children’s Network would like to share some important safety tips that will help ensure Halloween harmony for the entire family! The trick to making trick-or-treating a real treat for you and your children is to plan ahead. Make sure your little ones don’t hit the streets before reviewing the following safety tips:
Before Leaving the House:
• Plan a route with your children in your immediate neighborhood. Visit only those homes that are well-lit and decorated. Avoid deserted homes and always wait on the porch.
• Provide your children with a snack before they head out to have fun. That way they will be less tempted to sample their goodies before they get home and you have had a chance to check them out.
• Pin a slip of paper with your child’s name, address and phone number inside a pocket in case they get separated from the group and make sure they have emergency money in case they need to call you.
Along the Route:
• No trick-or-treater, even the older ones, should be hitting the streets alone. Traveling with a group of friends is more fun and it’s safer.
• Identify “Block Parent” houses along the route. If there aren’t any, choose a “safe house” of a trusted family in your neighborhood where your children can seek refuge if they need help.
• Ensure that your children know to never accept a ride or go with anyone unless they have your permission first.
• Impress upon your children the importance of not getting so excited that they forget traffic safety and dash out in front of cars. They should always stay on the sidewalks and cross only at intersections, obeying the lights and looking both ways before crossing.
• All good things must come to an end! Give your children a definite time to be home and make sure older children are wearing a watch.
• Thoroughly inspect all treats and watch for any evidence of tampering. Immediately discard any treat that is not wrapped.
• Keep in mind that children will need a little time to wind down and talk about the fun they had. Oh yes, and to sample their treats … maybe one or two or!
For more information: http://www.enfant-retourquebec.ca
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