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Home Security For Children

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. – Benjamin Franklin

Make it a ritual for a child to lock the doors and windows.  Whether they are coming in with you, or preparing for bed at night, be sure they not only know how, but are in the habit of locking up. 

If they are old enough to stay at home alone, be sure they

- don’t open the door to strangers

- know how to arm and disarm the alarm system

- know how, and when, to call 911

- have a family or neighbor to contact for help

- have a cell phone in case telephone lines are cut

 

Establish a plan for when they are, or aren’t, to answer the phone, and teach them what to say. For example, if they are home alone, you may want them to fib and say that you’re busy, instead of saying that you are not at home.  Rehearse with them so they’ll know how to handle the situation.

Of course, we always tell our children not to talk to strangers.  It may help to explain that bad people will pretend to be a plumber, a delivery person, or in distress to get access to them or your home. If they are frightened or “feel funny” about someone who has rung the door bell, who peers around the house, or doesn’t go away, they should phone an adult or 911 immediately.

 

Consider installing a door viewer at your child’s eye level. The standard height is much too high for most children and makes it useless. Yes, they may only be able to see a knee or a belt buckle until the person walks away, but even that may provide a clue of identity.

Last, make sure your children have a cellular phone to use in case of emergency. If the phone lines are cut or tampered with, they can still call a trusted neighbor or family member for help.

Good habits can last a lifetime.

Duncan Cottrell, The Entry Enforcer, is a home intrusion prevention expert.  He and his team offer door and window reinforcing and free home security assessments.  Duncan answers questions at Duncan@EntryEnforcer.com or (404)289-6960.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Kevin Raposo June 29, 2012 at 02:21 PM
Good information here! It's very important for parents to implement these tips into their kids daily routine. It's amazing how many stories I read about kids opening doors to strangers which end up being burglars. Good info here.
Kevin Raposo June 29, 2012 at 02:22 PM
If it's OK with the community, I would like to share an article that might be helpful to readers on how to better protect yourself from a burglar: Burglar Reveals 15 Trade Secrets - A Look Into The Mind of a Burglar http://simplisafe.com/blog/burglar-reveals-15-trade-secrets-look-mind-burglar Feel free to share or re-post!
Péralte Paul (Editor) June 29, 2012 at 02:32 PM
Thanks for sharing, Kevin.
Lloyd Progroup September 19, 2012 at 09:14 PM
You are absolutely right. We have to do some door to door canvassing sometimes. It is AMAZING how many kids open the doors to strangers! My brother recently had a home break in in Atlanta. These kids are getting more and more BRAZEN. You can read about what happened here: http://www.lloydprogroup.com/blog/3-tips-to-minimize-home-break-ins/

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