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DoDEA OSS: Safety and Security Tips: Security Issues for Children

Security Issues for Children
  • Ensure children always carry some form of identification; and that they know their home address and telephone number.
  • As best as yon can, know where your children are. Day and Night.
  • Have identification documents (current photographs, fingerprints, etc.) available. Most MP and SP stations offer "Child Identification" packets, which include photographs, fingerprints, and identification tags.
  • Never leave young children alone or unattended - even for short periods.
  • Instruct children to keep doors and windows locked and to never admit strangers to the home.
  • Teach children how to contact the police or a neighbor. Show them how to use the phone in an emergency and let them practice by calling a friend.
  • Don't have children wear clothing or carry items with their names displayed on the outside.
  • At an appropriate age, teach your children how to safely cross streets.
  • Advise your children to:
    • Never leave home without telling you where they will be.
    • Travel and play with a friend or group.
    • Avoid isolated areas.
    • Refuse to go with strangers and never accompany strangers anywhere...even if the strangers say Mom or Dad sent them.
  • Establish a secret "codeword" that only you and your child knows which can be used by a friend if your child does need to be picked-up.
  • Make sure children know where to go if they feel threatened.
  • Teach them to report anything that makes them afraid or uncomfortable.

Children and Traveling

  • Children should always wear some type of identification.
  • Write down the name, address and phone number of your hotel. Have each child carry a copy. Most hotels have business cards or matchbooks. Of course, if matchbooks are used, remove the matches before giving them to children.
  • Explain the local police uniforms and where they may be able to find help if they become separated.
  • Give them coins to use pay phones and show them how to operate them. Let them practice.
  • Establish rendezvous points in the event someone gets separated. Make sure it is a place your children can find.
  • Keep a close eye on your children. Have them use the buddy system if practical.
  • If children are old enough to do things on their own, set meeting locations and times. Before they set out, remember what they are wearing. Check to ensure they have coins for pay phones.

Sources for Additional Information

The U.S. Department of State operates a 24 hour per day information center. Travel advisories for countries and areas can be obtained from the center, and travelers can report emergencies involving U.S. citizens. Information concerning marriages overseas, citizenship questions, and judicial services can also be obtained. The telephone number is (202) 647-5225.

Most U.S. military transportation offices maintain travel advisories issued by the U.S. Department of State through Department of Defense channels.

Pamphlets and publications can provide valuable information concerning general security issues and crime prevention tips; but they should not be used as a sole source of such information. The most current and specific information can and should be obtained from Law Enforcement Officials, Security Officers, and/or U.S. Embassy Regional Security Officers in the area in which you live or are planning to travel.

Be Smart | Be Alert | Be Aware