If you caught Townsquare Media News Director, Ted Muehl's news story, "Oneonta Police Say Riverside Elementary Students Approached by Stranger Offering Candy" today, then you know that the old adage of "Stranger, Danger" is just as relevant as it ever was.  Predators of children are in our communities and we need to take this time to talk to our children once again about personal safety issues but with a modern approach.   According to kidpower.org, "most violence is caused by people we know, not by strangers."

Since we are focusing on strangers right now in light of our recent Oneonta incident, we have some tips on what to tell your kids about safety regarding someone they don't know.

Rules about Stranger Danger

  • A stranger is anyone you don’t know. Even if someone is pretty or looks safe, that person is still a stranger.
  • Never go anywhere with a stranger or get in a stranger’s car.
  • Never take food, candy, or any other gifts from a stranger.
  • Do not pet a stranger’s animal, even if you are invited to pet it.
  • You are a kid. A stranger should not ask you for help. If a stranger asks you for help, get away from him as fast as possible.
  • Always stay away from the doors and windows when someone comes to visit and let an adult greet the visitor.
  • If anyone ever makes you uncomfortable in any way, tell your parent or another trusted adult immediately.
  • If a stranger tries to take you, yell “No!” and fight as hard as you can to get loose. Run to a public place and keep running until you find an adult who can help you.
  • When you are in a public place, always stay with your parents. Never wander off by yourself.