Phil Ramos ...

Tips to keep children safe as they start a new school year


Dear Parent,

Whether you are sending your child off to school for the very first time or the experience has become an annual tradition, as a father I know how hard it can be to let your child walk out the front door alone. For many parents, driving their child back and forth to school every day is not a realistic option and they must let their children walk on their own or wait for a school bus. This task is made even harder as we hear more media accounts of children who are abducted or preyed upon by violent offenders. To help you keep your kids safe, I have compiled 10 safety tips to assist you and your family as you prepare to start the school year.

While parents and children can do their part to play it safe, tougher laws are also needed to protect our families. That is why I support legislation to keep sexual predators off our streets and give law enforcement officers the tools they need to protect our families. Legislation that passed both the Assembly and Senate this year would:

  • prohibit any Level 3 sex offender placed on conditional release or parole from entering school grounds, or other facilities where children are cared for (A.8894);

  • strengthen Megan’s Law by requiring annual updating of online photographs of Level 3 offenders (Ch. 56 of 2005) and aliases of Level 2 and Level 3 offenders (Ch. 318 of 2005);

  • further strengthen Megan’s Law by requiring law enforcement agencies to notify organizations serving vulnerable populations like schools, day care centers and neighborhood watch groups of the presence of sex offenders in the community (A.2252-A); and

  • require the Division of Criminal Justice to work with local law enforcement agencies to ensure the Amber Alert child abduction system is implemented statewide (Ch. 348 of 2005).

These are only some of the measures taken this legislative session that will help prevent these heinous crimes. I will continue to work with the Senate, the governor and my colleagues to ensure that these important proposals become law. If you have any concerns or comments about this or any other topic, please contact my office at 435-3214 or by email at .

Philip Ramos
Member of the Assembly
1010 Suffolk Ave.
Brentwood, NY 11717
Assemblyman Ramos

As another school year begins, it’s important for parents to send their children to school with a few simple safety lessons. To ensure that daily activities like walking or waiting at the bus stop are as safe as possible, parents should discuss rules with their children and teach them what to do in case of an emergency. To keep your children safe, here are 10 helpful tips:

1.   Teach Children Key Information

Teach your children their full name, address, phone number with area code, parents’ names and work phone numbers. Also teach them how to make an emergency call to you or 911 from a pay phone.

2.   Teach Children Who Is Safe

Children should be taught at an early age what type of "stranger" is okay to ask for help when they are lost or frightened. Good examples are: a mother with children, a clerk in a store, or a uniformed police officer.

3.   Know Where Your Child Is Going

Children should always inform you before they go anywhere. As a parent, ask the questions: who, what, when, where, why?

4.   Teach Children About the Buddy System

Never let your children go anywhere alone. Remind them that there is safety in numbers and they should always use the buddy system.

5.   Don’t Let Children Be Lured In

Children should be taught not to go near cars or be lured by adults asking for directions, help finding something they lost, saying that their parents are in trouble, or that they will take them to mom or dad.


6.   Develop a Password System

Children can be very trusting of adults, especially adults who they may be somewhat familiar with. It is critical that you and your children have a password system. Share the password only with your child, family members and trusted friends and arrange that any adult who tries to accompany them must have the password before they will go anywhere with them.

7.   Reinforce Safety Skills

Parents should seize every opportunity to reinforce safety skills. If an incident occurs in your community, speak frankly about it and use this time to discuss and re-emphasize the safety rules with them.

8.   Take the Initiative to Be Informed

As a parent, be informed by knowing where the child predators live in your neighborhood. For more information, call 1-800-262-3257 or visit the state Sex Offender Registry Web site at:

photo 9.   Know How to Report Your Missing Child

Time is a very critical factor in abduction cases. When you cannot find your child, you should immediately call your local law enforcement and provide your child’s name, date of birth, height, weight, and any distinctive marks such as eyeglasses, braces or scars. Request that your child’s information be immediately entered into the National Crime Information Center’s Missing Person File, and call the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST.


***Click here for printable view.***
10.   Always Keep an Up-To-Date Record of Your Child’s Information and Description

In case of an emergency, it’s critically important to have readily available up-to-date records of your children, including a recent photograph, fingerprints, physical description and even a DNA sample. To request a helpful brochure that includes a Child Information Card, clip this card and return it to my office: 1010 Suffolk Ave., Brentwood, NY 11717. You will need one brochure for each child. Make sure you let us know how many copies of the brochure you need.

______Missing Children

To further protect our children, my office also has the following brochures available. Simply check off the brochure/s you would like sent.

______ Say No to Drugs
______ Playing it Safe
______ Finding Quality Daycare
______ Protecting Children from Online Criminals