Keep Kids Safe from Stranger Danger at the DoorBy Home Security Source Mar 23 , 2010 | 9:30:00 amPosted in: Burglary & Loss Prevention
Leaving a child home alone can be nerve racking. But, being prepared for potentially dangerous situations is the best way to ensure that children will react in a manner that keeps them safe. One of the most unsettling dangers is the possibility of an attacker, sexual predator or burglar coming to your home while your child is there alone.
To keep children safe, educate them about what to do if someone comes to the door. The rule is simple – never open the door.
Children home alone should ignore anyone knocking on the door or ringing the doorbell. Anyone permitted in the home while a child is home alone should have a key. Anyone without a key should be ignored.
Unfortunately, not everyone is a friend and sometimes neighbors or causal acquaintances that a child may recognize as a friendly familiar face can become predators.
Assailants can be persistent and insist that they know someone is inside the home, that a parent sent them or that they have been hired to work on the home. In this situation advise your child not to believe them and immediately call a parent, discreetly if possible, to inform them of the situation.
If it is necessary to communicate with the visitor they should ask who it is from behind a locked door and reply that their mom or dad is busy and cannot come to the door. Children should be coached to never indicate that they are home alone.
There are no laws specifying an age requirement for children to be left home alone. This is a judgment call that must be made considering the child’s maturity, understanding of the situation, ability to follow rules and their overall comfort with the idea of being home alone.
At whatever age you decide is appropriate to leave your child home alone it is crucial to clearly establish rules about opening the door, practice them and explain their purpose.
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