Making trick-or-treating safer for kids

Posted Oct 28, 2015 by Tim Sandle
October 31 is edging closer and this Saturday many children will be dressing up and knocking on neighborhood doors. To make sure everyone is safe, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection has offered some tips.
Halloween decorations in a Toronto neighbourhood
A Toronto house gets creative with its Halloween decorations
By urszula
The Canadian Centre for Child Protection is a charitable organization with a focus on the personal safety of all children. The organization wants Halloween activities to remain fun, but it is also mindful that parents want to know that their children are safe as they wander the streets dressed as witches or ghouls asking for sweets.
Trick-or-treating is a Halloween custom for children in many countries: dressing up in costume and going to houses asking for a trick (normally an idle threat) or a treat. The origin dates back to the Middle Ages, although the modern custom began in the 1920s. However, because children will knock on neighbourhood doors parents will be anxious to know that their child is safe.
For this reason, the child protection society has come up with some best practice advice, useful for Halloween participants around the world. This is featured on a site titled “Five habits for safe Halloween.” The site takes the form of handy poster.
In summary, the five tips are:
Make a plan: parents and children should pick the trick-or-treat route and stick to it.
Supervise: parents should either go out with younger children or arrange regular check-ins with older children.
Use the buddy-system: children should go out in pairs or larger groups (more advice on this is available at the ‘billy buddy’ website.
Be instinctive: parents should encourage children to trust their instincts and not to go anywhere that looks dangerous.
Encourage assertiveness: this includes things like parents telling their children not to go into strange homes and to understand the boundaries of personal space.
Commenting on the tips, Noni Classen, Director of Education at the Canadian Centre said: “These safety habits are easy to implement into your family’s Halloween routine and create a safety foundation that you can build on year by year as children become more independent.”