Stranger danger, a term we have all heard of, yet the risk of strangers abducting or hurting children in some horrible way is never far away. It is therefore, of utmost importance to ensure children know exactly whom they should regards as strangers and how to avoid being hurt by accident or strangers’ criminal intentions.
Many younger children are rather confused as to who a stranger is and how strangers may look. In many cases a child’s idea of strangers is that they will look sinister and probably be male. It is therefore, vital to explain to them that anyone they do not know, regardless of whether they happen to be old or young, male or female, smart or scruffy, is a stranger.
The most basic, ‘golden’ rules of stranger danger every child should know include never to:
- Accept sweets, gifts or lifts from strangers
- Go anywhere with strangers
- Go off on their own without letting parents or other trusted adults know
- Go up to cars when asked for directions
- Play in dark, lonely places
In addition, they should know that they should always tell mum, dad or another adult they trust if a stranger has approached them.
The Internet obviously also represents a serious risk of children becoming victims to the crimes of strangers. Here, too, it is important to educate children about the possible risks. Teaching them the SMART rules is equally important:
- S stands for always keeping personal details secret
- M stands for never meeting strangers they have met online without parents or carers being present
- A stands for never accepting e-mails from strangers, as they may contain nasty messages or viruses
- R stands for remembering that people could be lying and may be someone completely different to who they claim to be. Staying in public chat room areas and getting out immediately if made to feel uncomfortable is equally vital.
- T stands for telling trusted adults, such as mum, dad, grandparents or a carer, if something worries them
While you are at it, you may also want to inform your children of other potential risks, such as injuries by slips, trips and falls; cycling accidents and so on, for instance. Make them aware of the possible risks and the need to tell someone as soon as possible after the accident.
When things happen
Should you or your child be injured by slipping, tripping or falling, suffer a cycling injury or become victim of any other kind of accident that was someone else’s fault, you may be able to claim for personal injury compensation. Learn more about claiming slip, trip or fall, cycling or motoring accident compensation by contacting Accident Advice Helpline now on 0800 689 0500.
Date Published: April 27, 2015
Author: Accident Advice