Host: What are some things, children can do to be safer while going to or from school?
Nancy McBride: One of the things the National Center learned in our attempted abduction studies, that kids are potentially vulnerable walking or riding to and from school. So we want to make that kids know the rules. Basically to stay together, it s safer for kids to be with other kids or with a dog certainly than it is with them to be alone. They need to have a route, a well traveled route where other people are, so that if they get in trouble they can seek help from somebody else and they need to learn that they never have to respond to anybody who asks them to do anything or go anywhere without their parent or guardian s permission. So if they are approached by somebody in a car who says hey, I will give you ride to school hopping or listen, I lost my puppy, can you help me find that puppy? The response to that is they don t have to respond, all they need to do is get away from that person and tell a trusted adult as quickly as possible. It s helpful for kids to be taught to be observant as well. If something happens or someone approaches them, the more information they have to share the better but we don t want kids putting themselves in danger to get that information. Their first and foremost thought should be I don t have to respond, I just want to get out of here as quickly as I can because I don t have to be polite to this person . So this is a situation when you are out and about on the streets to be alert, to be aware and to remember your rules and as a parental guardian, it s a good idea to reinforce these rules with your kids on a regular basis and practice them periodically to make sure that they are incorporating them into their daily lives.