WI Clearinghouse for Missing
& Exploited Children & Adults
Commemorative AMBER Alert Stamp
Tips for Parents
Rules...General Parental Tips to Help Keep Your Children Safer (PDF file)
Know the Rules...Abduction and
Kidnapping Prevention Tips for Parents
Provides straightforward safety tips and guidelines for
parents to consider when talking to their children about personal safety along
with recommendations to better safeguard homes and surroundings
Page One (PDF file)
Page Two (PDF file)
IF YOUR CHILD IS MISSING
- Immediately call or go to your local law enforcement agency (police or
sheriff) and file a missing person report. When a child is missing and
believed to be in danger, there is no 24-hour waiting period in Wisconsin.
- Bring the most recent color photograph of the child, along with the
child's fingerprints, hair sample, blood type, and physical description
including a description of the clothes the child was wearing.
for more information about Amber Alert Plan criteria.
- Information about your missing child will automatically be entered into
the National Crime Information Center computer's Missing Person File (NCIC-MPF).
- Report the child missing to the toll-free hotline of the National Center
for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) at 1-800-843-5678. The National
Center can issue e-mail alerts about your missing child, distribute posters
with your child's photo and information nationwide, and provide support and
other resources for you and your family.
- Be alert to a teenager or adult who is paying an unusual amount of
attention to your children or giving them inappropriate or expensive gifts.
- Contact other non-profit missing child organizations and state
clearinghouses in adjacent states. Register your missing child and find out
what other search assistance and support services they can provide.
- Contact the U.S. State Department's Passport Office (Office of Citizen
Appeals and Legal Assistance, Passport Services) at 202-647-0518 in case the
suspect tries to apply for a passport to leave the country with your child.
- Be sensitive to changes in your children's behavior; they are a signal
that you should sit down and talk to your children about what caused the
- Teach your children to trust their own feelings and assure them that they
have the right to say no to what they sense is wrong.
CHILD SAFETY TIPS TO PREVENT ABDUCTIONS
- Teach your children their full names, addresses and phone numbers.
- Teach your children how to make a long distance call (both directly to you
using the area code and by dialing "0" for the operator).
- Know your neighbors and your child's friends, including their names,
addresses and telephone numbers.
- Know the routes your child takes to and from school, friends' homes and
- Be involved in your child's activities by volunteering at school, clubs,
and sporting events - participate in a neighborhood watch program.
- Before leaving your child in the care of a day-care, pre-school, baby
sitter, or youth organization, check their references and qualifications.
Ask if criminal background checks are conducted before new staff members are
- Write your police chief, sheriff and other elected officials, in support
of the Amber Alert Plan, police missing person programs, and other child
safety efforts; write the general managers of your local radio and TV
stations in support of the Amber Alert Plan and the Emergency Alert System.
- Review the web sites of Missing Child Organizations for volunteer
opportunities, such as e-mailing or distributing posters of missing
- Teach your child what to do if approached by a stranger. Common uses are
offering a ride, gifts or candy, asking the child to help them look for a
lost dog or cat, or claiming that the child's parent has asked them to bring
the child home because of an emergency.
- Listen to your child; don't disregard their fears. Instead, let them know
that you take their fears and concerns seriously.
BASIC RULES OF SAFETY FOR CHILDREN
As soon as your children can articulate a sentence, they can begin the
process of learning how to protect themselves against abduction and
- Children should be taught if you are in a public place and you get
separated from your patents, don't wander around looking for them. Go to a
checkout counter, the security office, or the lost and found and quickly
tell the person in charge that you have lost your mom and dad and need help
- You should not get into a car or go anywhere with any person unless your
parents have told you that it is okay.
- If someone follows you on foot or in a car, stay away from him or her. You
should not get close to any car, unless your parent or a trusted adult
- Grownups and others who need help should not be asking children for help;
they should be asking older people.
- No one should be asking you for directions or to look for a "lost
puppy" or telling you that your mother or father is in trouble and that
he or she will take you to them.
- If someone tries to take you somewhere, quickly get away from him (or her)
and yell or scream. "This man (woman) is trying to take me away"
or "this person is not my father (mother)."
- You should try to take a friend with you, and never go places alone.
- Always ask your parents' permission to leave the yard or play area or to
go into someone's home.
- Never hitchhike or try to get a ride home with anyone unless your parents
have told you it is okay to ride with him or her.
- No one should touch you in the parts of the body that would be covered by
a bathing suit, nor should you touch anyone else in those areas. Your body
is special and private.
- You can be assertive and you have the right to say no to someone who tries
to take you somewhere, touches you, or makes you feel uncomfortable, scared
or confused in anyway.
8 RULES FOR SAFETY
Traditional messages of "Don't take candy from strangers,"
"Don't be a tattletale," and "Be respectful to adults, they know
what they're doing" are incomplete and can lead to the abduction and sexual
victimization of children. Children and families do not have to live in fear of
these crimes, but they do need to be alert, cautious, and prepared. The key to
child safety is communication. A child's best weapon against victimization is
his or her ability to think and preparation to respond to potentially dangerous
situations. By learning and following these 8 Rules for Safety, children can
empower themselves with the skills, knowledge, and abilities to better protect
- Before I go anywhere, I always check first with my parents or the person
in charge. I tell them where I am going, how I will get there, who will be
going with me, and when I'll be back.
- I check first for permission from my parents before getting into a car or
leaving with anyone - even someone I know. I check first before changing
plans or accepting money, gifts, or drugs with out my parents' knowledge.
- It is safer for me to be with other people when going places or playing
outside. I always use the "buddy system."
- I say NO if someone tries to touch me in ways that make me feel
frightened, uncomfortable, or confused. Then I go and tell a grown-up I
trust what happened.
- I know it is not my fault if someone touches me in a way that is not O.K.
I don't have to keep secrets about those touches.
- I trust my feelings and talk to grown-ups about problems that are too big
for me to handle on my own. A lot of people care about me and will listen
and believe me. I am not alone.
- It is never too late to ask for help. I can keep asking until I get the
help I need.
- I am a special person, and I deserve to feel safe. My rules are:
- CHECK FIRST
- USE THE "BUDDY SYSTEM"
- SAY NO, THEN GO AND TELL
- LISTEN TO MY FEELINGS, AND TALK WITH GROWN-UPS I TRUST ABOUT MY PROBLEMS
PARENT RECORD KEEPING
- Keep current identification on each child (such as a recent photo, video,
fingerprints, hair sample, blood type, identifying marks, and physical
description) in a safe accessible place.
- Know how to obtain your child's dental x-rays and medical records.