“For a youth, if someone were to come up to you on the street, whether you be walking, waiting for the bus, or on your bike, it’s good to recognize who the trusted adults are in your life. The school resource officers are out and about in their marked police vehicles, normally during school pick up and drop off times.”
Constable Melanie Flynn with the Lloydminster Detachment says for parents to ask their kids how their day was and take note if something is odd.
The advice comes following an incident in Cold Lake in which school kids while at the bus stop were approached by the occupants of a vehicle who suggested that the bus service was not running. Police say the occupants then offered to give the children a ride.
Flynn suggests for your kids to get to know the bus driver and even the replacement bus driver. She notes you can also have a bus-buddy, that’s another student that your child would check-in with each day.
The Community Police Officer has some tips for kids to stay out of such a situation.
“You can always talk to your trusted police officers, talk to a trusted adult you know. Maybe you are returning back to the school to talk to a teacher, that might be something you could do. But never get into a vehicle with someone that you don’t know.”
Flynn adds pointers like a good walk to school route or bus stop route plan, especially for parents to know where their child is walking to and even walking the route with them.
The Lloydminster RCMP detachment has a new Facebook page where they have been posting updates and pointers on various topics.
Other tips suggested by RCMP include:
- Trust your instincts
- Don’t be embarrassed to make a scene if you feel you are in danger.
- Use call apps to call faster in an emergency
- Be aware of your surroundings, walk briskly and look alert
- Have parents or guardians know your route and keep them updated on where you are
- Stay more than a car length from strangers
- Parents and children are encouraged to talk about personal safety.