Due to the recent “stranger danger” incident at Urbana Middle School this week, we feel it is important to remind students, families, educators, and the community about general safety issues. Safety of our students is very important, and we appreciate the support of Urbana Police related to safety of our students traveling to and from school. The school district works closely with law enforcement agencies to help keep our students and community safe.
These tips are for students of all ages and grade-levels.
If a student is approached by a stranger:
- Check with an adult prior to going anywhere with anyone, especially someone you do not know. Do not walk with or accept a ride with a stranger, no matter what they offer you.
- Trust your instincts. It is okay to say no, even to an adult. If a stranger approaches, you do not have to talk to them. If something feels wrong or unsafe, it probably is.
- Run. If a stranger tries to get you into a car, run, kick, yell or scream to get the attention of others. Most adults will stop for a child in trouble.
- Remember information about the vehicle (license plate number, color, bumper stickers, etc.) and report this information right away!
- Tell a trusted adult!
Tips for Parents:
- Avoid displaying the child’s name on clothes or other personal items.
- Create a unique family “code word” that only you and your child know.
- Show children how to use a phone and remind them that 911 calls are free. 911 can be dialed from any cell phone or pay phone.
- Teach children to avoid walking outdoors with headphones, which can prevent them from hearing someone coming up from behind.
- Remind children not to assist strangers with providing directions, finding lost pets, or other requests.
- Do not wait to call police.
If you need to report non-emergency incident or suspicious person(s) within your area, please contact the METCAD non-emergency number (217) 333-8911.
Citizens can also contact Crime Stoppers:
- Call Crime Stoppers at (217) 373-TIPS or
- Submit tips online at www.373tips.com or
· Text the following: Tip397 plus the information to CRIMES (274637).