All Saints Day Eve (Halloween) features Kids, Goblins, Ghosts, and perhaps even Real Bad Guys to avoid

This well-known and favorite day. October 31st, originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Sam-hain, when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. The evening before All Saints Day was known as All Hallows Eve, and later became Halloween . As many of us experi-enced as kids and/or young parents, this was a night to dress up and comb the neighborhoods for special treats that covered the spectrum from chocolates, to homemade cookies and candied apples. However, in today’s world, this evening has become a potential nightmare for many families. We should all be careful as on holidays we often times leave ourselves susceptible to the Real Bad Guys working overtime looking for many of these children to become their next victim!

Now that I have your attention, let’s briefly discuss the ways to protect our families and children while they enjoy this once religious holiday.

Here are some quick tips to consider, depending on the ages of your children:

  • Glow sticks or small flashlights are a must for everyone
  • Costumes with restricted eyesight or limit visibility are discouraged
  • Only go trick-or-treating in large groups and with friends, this includes tweens and teens
  • Only walk in areas or neighborhoods that are known to you
  • Parents/Guardians should be nearby as children ring doorbells
  • NEVER allow children to go inside a home that you don’t know
  • Candy collected is OFF LIMITS until children get home and you inspect
  • Beware of vehicles that may approach near kids walking or strangers that want to engage in conversation. Keep moving towards lighted or safe area
  • Cell phones, gismos or other communication devices are encouraged for teens
  • Noise makers or safety devices, e.g. air horns, personal alarms, jogger alarms, etc., are perfect for warning off unwanted animals, or people
  • Set a curfew for your Trick or Treating after 9 pm increases the opportunity for something bad to happen. To avoid a crime of opportunity, remove the opportunity.
Finally, this is always a good time to remind your child to NEVER go with a stranger, even when threatened with a knife or gun. Going off to a second location does not end well and can often become fatal. Running away from a weapon (knife or gun) is the first step to surviving. Handguns are difficult to shoot accurately when you are more than 12 feet away.  Moving targets at night are almost impossible to hit, and knives are never thrown. According to the U.S. military, 85% of all handgun wounds are survivable. These are not to be confused with mass, active shooters, who shoot victims in close proximity.
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