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Protecting Your Child From Being Abducted

The first and most critical step in protecting your child from potential abductors is to be proactive with whomever your child has contact with. Don’t hesitate to perform criminal background checks on anyone who cares for or spends alone time with your child – nannies, coaches, babysitters, daycare providers, teachers, neighbors, etc. Be very specific in your instructions to caregivers. For example, it is not acceptable for a babysitter to bring along a friend or boyfriend whom you do not know.

Child Abductions Safety Checklist:

  • Does your child understand that he or she should never get in the car with anyone but Mom or Dad?
  • If you must send someone else to pick up your child, do you have a secret code word? Does your child know to always ask for that code word (while standing a safe distance from the vehicle) before getting into anyone else’s car – even if it is a neighbor?
  • Does your child know not to get into cars or go into houses of neighbors he or she doesn’t know very well? (Go over a list of acceptable neighbors.)
  • Does your child know to never use a public restroom alone?
  • Does your child know it is okay to say “no” to adults?
  • Does your child know never exit an area (such as a store, the mall, or the zoo), even if the person helping asks him or her to step outside?
  • Does your child know the body parts that are unacceptable for others to touch?
  • Does your child know to shout “no” or “stop” if someone touches him or her inappropriately?
  • Does your child know to trust his or her instincts and that even if your child makes a bad choice with an innocent stranger, you will support him or her?
  • Does your child know that even trusted people shouldn’t ask him or her to do something that makes him or her uncomfortable?