Stay alert and tuned in to your surroundings, wherever you are.
Don’t be taken by surprise. Be aware and be prepared.
Stand tall and walk confidently. Don’t show fear. Don’t look like a victim.
Trust your instincts. If you feel uncomfortable in a place or situation, leave right away and get help if necessary.
Be always positive.
Choose busy streets and avoid going through vacant lots, alleys, or other deserted areas. At night, walk in well-lit areas whenever possible.
Try not to walk or jog alone. Take a friend or neighbour along for company.
Get to know the neighbour hoods and neighbours where you live and work.
Carry your purse close to your body and keep a firm grip on it.
Avoid pickpockets by carrying your wallet in an inside coat pocket or front trouser pocket.
IN YOUR CAR
Always lock your car and take the keys, even if you’ll be gone only a short time.
Keep your car in good running condition, and keep the tank at least one-quarter full;
Lock doors while driving.
If your car breaks down, raise the hood and place emergency reflectors or flares. Then stay in the locked car. When someone stops to help, don’t get out. Ask him or her, through a closed or cracked window, to telephone the police to come and help.
If you’re coming or going after dark, park in a well-lit area that will still be well-lit when you return.
Be especially alert when using enclosed parking garages. Don’t walk into an area if you feel uncomfortable.
Leave only your ignition key with a parking attendant. Don’t leave your house key, garage door opener, or other important items in your car.
Never pick up hitchhikers.
Control your keys. Never leave an identification tag on your key ring. If your keys are lost or stolen, it could help a thief locate your car and burglarize your home.
If carrying packages or valuable items, store them in your trunk. If you do leave packages, clothing or other articles in the car; make sure they are out of sight.
Keep your car’s Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and a complete description in a safe place at home. Since 1969, the federal government has required manufactures to engrave a unique number, the VIN, on all passenger cars in one visible and several hidden locations. One VIN is engraved on a metal plate on the dashboard near the windshield. VIN’s of stolen cars are registered with the FBI’s National Crime Information Center.
License plates frequently are stolen from cars used in other crimes. Get in the habit of checking your plates when you drive. A few drops of solder on the bolts or blurring the threads can help safeguard your plates.
Keep the following information in a safe location.
Year; Make; Model; Colour; Id# or VIN; License #
Identifying Marks; Insurance Co.; and policy #
WHEN USING PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION
When using the bus, be sure to have your fare out and ready before you leave home, office or store.
Plan your route to use the busiest, best-lit stop possible, both to get on and off a bus. If you must wait, stay near the attendant’s stand or in the best-lit area available.
Keep your purse, shopping bag, backpack, packages, etc., in your lap, on your arm, or between your feet–not by themselves on an empty seat.
Sit near the driver, but not right next to the door.
Don’t let yourself doze off on a bus. It can make you an easy target.
Try to plan your visits to automatic teller during the day, rather than after dark.
Choose an ATM location that is in a busy public place.
Avoid making withdrawals in isolated areas.
If at all possible, take along a friend who can watch the surroundings while you are conducting your transactions.
Pre-plan your transaction carefully, and don’t spend too much time at the machine.
When you make a withdrawal, quickly place the money in your purse or wallet and leave as soon as you finish your transaction.
Watch out for suspicious-looking people waiting around an ATM–they may not really be customers. If someone offers to let you go ahead of them, decline politely and leave.
When visiting a drive-through ATM, keep your doors locked and be prepared to drive away quickly. If anyone approaches your car on foot, roll up your window and drive off.
If you have not finished your transaction, and you are approached by a suspicious character, press the CANCEL button, receive your card and leave quickly.
KEEPING KIDS SAFE
A great thing about kids is their natural trust in people, especially in adults. It’s sometimes hard for parents to teach children to balance this trust with caution. But kids today need to know common-sense rules that can help keep them safe–and build the self-confidence they need to handle emergencies.
MAKE SURE YOUR KIDS KNOW!
How to use a public phone. Help them practice making emergency phone calls. Be sure emergency numbers–police, fire, poison control and emergency medical–are by all phones.
Their full name, address, and phone number (including the area code), plus your work phone number. If you have a cellular phone and/or beeper, teach your children these numbers as well.
How to walk confidently and stay alert to what’s going on around them.
To walk and play with friends, not alone.
To refuse rides or gifts from anyone, unless it’s someone both you and your child know and trust.
To tell a trusted adult immediately if anyone, no matter whom, touches them in a way that makes them feel uncomfortable.
SAFEGUARD YOUR CHILDREN
Learn about warning signs that your child might be involved with drugs or gangs.
Spend time listening to your children or just being with then. Help them find positive, fun activities that they can take part in.
Always know and know about your child’s activities.
Know where your child is, and when he or she will return.
Be sure you and your child are clear on your rules and expectations for activities. Make absolutely clear what is OK and what is not.
Teach your child Internet safety tips. The people they talk to online might not be who they say they are.
HOME ALONE! WHAT KIDS SHOULD KNOW...
What steps you want them to follow when they get home; such as phoning you at work or a neighbor or grandparent who is at home.
Not to let strangers, adults or children into the home for any reason.
Not to tell telephone callers that they’re alone.
That door and window locks must always be used. Be sure your children know how the work them.
Not to go into the home if a door is ajar or a window is broken, but to go to a neighbour’s or public phone and call the police.
Your rules about acceptable activities when you are not at home. Be very clear.