BRIDGWATER NEWS: Children need to know about “stranger danger”

BRIDGWATER NEWS: Children need to know about “stranger danger”

PARENTS may wish to sit down with their children and tell them about how important it is not to talk to strangers – following the publication of an e-fit of a man police would like to speak to about an incident in which he approached a 12-year-old girl in Bridgwater.

The police released the e-fit on Thursday (September 7, 2017) resembling a man who at around 8.10pm on Tuesday, August 22, 2017, a black coloured van pulled up alongside a young girl in Charolais Drive.

A man got out of the vehicle and placed his hand on the wrist of the girl. Nothing was said.

The girl screamed and ran off and the man got back in the van and drove off towards the Wilstock Housing Estate.

The full story about the e-fit can be found on this link - http://www.bridgwaterpress.co.uk/blog/2017/09/07/bridgwater-news-e-fit-released-over-stranger-danger-alert-as-girl-12-approached-by-man/ .

But it might be sensible for parents and carers to sit down with children and just to press home the message about the dangers of talking to strangers.

Here is some advice on “stranger danger.”

1: A stranger is anyone that your child doesn’t know or doesn’t know very well. It’s both common and dangerous for your child to think that “strangers” look scary or sinister, like villains in films or cartoons.

2: Play a game with your child and ask them to draw a stranger. It will help you reinforce that a stranger can look like anyone.

3: Tell your child that they won’t be able to tell if a stranger is nice or not – so all strangers should be treated in the same way.

4: Tell your child that even if they are not sure if someone is a stranger they should always behave in the same way and not take risks.

5: Teach them stock phrases to help give them confidence. For example – if a child is offered money or sweets they should say: “No thank you. Please leave me alone.”

6: It is important that children don’t think that talking to a stranger is okay if they are with a friend. Teach them they should only talk to someone they don’t know if YOU are there by their side.

7: Although it sounds obvious – please stress to your child that they should never talk to a stranger, never accept gifts or sweets and never walk off or get into a car with one.

8: If your child is approached by a stranger – encourage them to raise the alarm by shouting NO to draw attention. They should not be scared to do this and be told that it is the right thing to do.

9: Teach your child the simple message if approached by a stranger: “Don’t Go – Say No.”

10: It is important to reinforce this information with your children on a regular basis – especially with younger children.

BRIDGWATER NEWS: Children need to know about “stranger danger”

PHOTO: If you can help police identify  the man in this e-fit released in relation to the incident in Charolais Drive, Bridgwater, please call them on 101 and give the call handler the reference number 5217192534.

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