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Trick or Treat Tips
by Rey Colon: 35th Ward Alderman, Chicago
:: Posted on Friday, October 19, 2012.
Halloween is that great time of year when kids dress up in costumes and get free candy. But in the excitement of Halloween, we must remember to be careful. To ensure our children safely enjoy the experience, I offer some common sense reminders that go be
: Costume selection should be as much about safety; as it is about which character your child will be. Make sure the costume is fire proof or treated with fire retardant. If they are wearing a mask, make sure that the eye holes are large enough for good vision.
Trick or Treat should only take place under the supervision of a responsible parent or adult. Children should never ring a doorbell or go into a stranger's house without mom or dad present.
Check online for a list of registered sex offenders in your area. Make sure that your kids stay away from these addresses. If possible, make sure that your child has a pre-programmed mobile phone with them with important numbers ready for use.
If your children are in the care of a responsible adult and you are not going with them; you should know the route your kids will be taking. Have them check in with you by phone or by stopping back at home every hour. Don't let them deviate from the planned route and always know where they will be.
Talk to your children about being responsible pedestrians. Even if they have the right of way, they must be careful when crossing a street. Look both ways. Make sure no cars are coming. If older brothers or sisters are present, they should hold hands. Only cross streets at stop lights and cross walks.
Talk to your children about the difference between tricks and vandalism. Throwing eggs is NOT cool, very damaging and considered vandalism.
Talk to your children about caring for animals. Some people use Halloween as an excuse to hurt cats. Remind your kids that how they treat animals is a reflection of how they treat others. Harming animals is morally wrong and against the law.
Feed your children before they go out trick or treating. They won't be as tempted to eat their sweets before they bring them home for you to check.
If your kids attend a Halloween party or event, keep an eye on them at all times. In a strange, costumed environment it may only take a minute with your back turned to find your child gone.
Set a time before curfew for your children to be home and stick to it.
Halloween is a fun time for children to be children. Halloween is also the teachable moment for adults to show love and responsibility for their children and the greater community.
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