Wednesday

Children are Still Being Kidnapped Everyday

What if your child was no more--I mean left, gone, without a trace!  This happened to a relative of mine.  She dropped off her daughter with a best friend only to return to pick her up after an extended stay and the two were no where to be found!  An Amber Alert was issued and luckily her child was recovered in another state hundreds of miles away from home unharmed. 

The pain, guilt, worry, and more that one goes through when he or she has to deal with an abduction.  Many of us parents don't bother to think about such things, because we have our children with us daily.  But when it happens to someone close to our families, we begin to have feelings of anxiety--we start to stress and trust levels begin to diminish  with some people in our inner circles.  We find ourselves being extra, sometimes overly, cautious. 

I thought of some points you may not have thought about lately when it comes to paying better attention to your children.  A wake up call typically moves us to do some things differently so as to prevent unnecessary issues as best we can and hopefully reduce the risk of a future kidnapping.

1.  Watch and listen to caretakers especially when they start referring to your children as theirs.

2.  Don't permit your children to stay anywhere often or for extended lengths of time, especially without checking in with the caretaker.

3.  Don't assume that because someone is nice and has a great background in handling children that he or she is always right, always trustworthy, and always treats your child with respect.

4.  When you have that stirring in your stomach, an odd feeling, or something that just doesn't seem right when you prepare to drop off your child with someone, don't ignore those signs!  Is missing a work day more important than the well being of your child?

5.  Pay particular attention to what your child/children say about certain individuals who come around them.  Don't brush off their statements as child talk and "kids being kids" particularly when you confront a caretaker about what he or she has said or done concerning your child.

6.  If something isn't right, most likely it isn't.  Always have a back up plan and don't hesitate to get authorities involved.

7.  Observe your surroundings.  Check out cars, trucks, and vans that seem to park near or around you whenever you walk with your child, visit with others, or drop your child off.  Notice who is sitting in those vehicles, what time they are parked and on what days.  Check for patterns.  View license plates, color and car make and note them in your cell phone or elsewhere.

In addition, do get your child's photo taken at least once a year.  Be sure to have fingerprints of your child filed away.  Also, know more about caretakers besides name, address, phone and other similar things.  Find out what their interests are.  Learn about where they are from and who their relatives are.  Take a photo of the caretaker with your child.  Jot down the vehicle information of the caretaker.  Note names of assistants, friends, church and civic group affiliations.  With this information, if something should ever occur with your child, the police have some information to conduct a thorough investigation.

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Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media

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