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Keeping Kids Safe: Advice from an Expert

It’s Halloween time, and it’s important to make certain our kids are safe when they go out trick or treating. But certainly, every day is that time, because as parents we must protect our kids from those who would do them harm -- like sexual predators and bullies.

Studies by David Finkelhor, Director of the Crimes Against Children Research Center, show that:

  • 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys is a victim of child sexual abuse;

  • Self-report studies show that 20% of adult females and 5-10% of adult males recall a childhood sexual assault or sexual abuse incident;

  • During a one-year period in the U.S., 16% of youth ages 14 to 17 had been sexually victimized;

  • Over the course of their lifetime, 28% of U.S. youth ages 14 to 17 had been sexually victimized;

  • Children are most vulnerable to child sex abuse between the ages of 7 and 13.

According to a 2003 National Institute of Justice report, 3 out of 4 adolescents who have been sexually assaulted were victimized by someone they knew well (page 5).

A Bureau of Justice Statistics report shows 1.6 % (sixteen out of one thousand) of children between the ages of 12-17 were victims of rape/sexual assault (page 18).

Clearly, child sex abuse is something that concerns every parent, as is the prevalence of bullying at school and in everyday life.

That's why in a new episode of The Lean to the Left Podcast we spoke with Robert Kahn, a retired deputy sheriff in Nevada and former elementary school teacher who has authored eight children’s books about safety in an increasingly dangerous world.

The #StrangerDanger” program he created for schools and community service organizations has been credited in foiling over 40 attempted abductions by strangers. We’re going explore issues of #GoodTouchBadTouch” and what that’s all about, and we’re going to take a look at the ever serious problem of #bullying.

Kahn, who has given over 20,000 presentations covering 15 topics on children’s safety issues, says schools are doing an increasingly good job of discouraging bullying, but the problem still persists and can have lasting consequences well into adulthood. He also was an instructor for D.A.R.E., a program that gives children the life skills they need to avoid involvement with drugs, gangs, and violence, and he discusses that in our interview as well.

Kahn holds a master’s degree in education from the University of Phoenix and a B.S. in education from the University of Nevada, Reno.

Take a listen:

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