Police warn parents to watch kids during school break

| 09/12/2011

normal_normal_PB7415_1.jpg(CNS): As part of the personal safety element of this year’s police initiative, Operation Christmas Cracker the RCIPS is warning parents, guardiansand carers to keep close supervision over kids this year when the school break starts otherwise they could face hefty fines. The Family Support Unit said they need to make sure that they know where their children are, and that they are appropriately supervised. Officers from the unit say that it is becoming increasingly common for parents to leave children unsupervised for long periods but the law required parents and guardians to take responsibility.

“In recent times we have had reports of parents leaving their children unsupervised at libraries and in other places for long periods of time during the school holidays,” said Inspector Christsandra Mitchell. “As part of the holiday safety initiative – Operation Christmas Cracker – we are reminding people that they need to make appropriate arrangements for their children during the holidays, or face the consequences.
“The law is quite clear in that you, as a parent or carer, have responsibility for your child. If you do not supervise him or her appropriately you could face a hefty fine or a prison sentence.”

Inspector Mitchell advised parents to make sure they always know where their children are and who is supervising them and unattended either at home, in public places or in vehicles.

If children are going to sleepovers parents need to know where the kids will be staying and who will be supervising them.

She also reminded parents to be vigilant about their children’s surroundings and of any unwelcome or unusual attention from others and to teach them the importance of saying ‘no’ and not accepting any gifts or rides from strangers. Be aware of any changes in your child’s behaviour, the police officer advised adding that this may be an indication that something is troubling him or her.

Inspector Mitchell also advised monitoring children’s access to internet and cell phones and to talk to them about the dangers of drink and drugs and to be involved in their activities.

If anyone wishes to speak to an officer from the Family Support Unit about children’s safety they should call 946-9185.

Operation Christmas Cracker began on 28 November 2011 and will run until 4 January 2012. This comprehensive safety drive will cover road safety, personal safety, home and business security and safety at sea.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Please advise what do single working mothers on less than CI$5 per hour do with their children during the holidays?they have no money nor household help so what do they do with their children

    • Anonymous says:

      As a responsible parent you should come up with creative ways to find a solution.  Don't play the victim role and do something about it.  Playing the victim shows your children that they should expect someone to help them rather than get up off their behind and help themselves. 

      I too am a single mother and while many things cost money, there are some free things that don't cost money.  Especially if your child is of an age that they can work or volunteer to do something.  The hospital, pines, humane society, red cross and others could use help and that would be supervised work experience.  Ask what age they are willing to have volunteers.  If your children are too young, most church groups have something or at least have retired elders that are quite willing to help as they would like the company. 

      If your children are expecting constant entertainment then they have another thing coming in the real world. 

    • truth says:

      They should do what they do.  Show everyone else WHY NOT to have children you can not afford and or don't have the ability to be responsible for.



    • Anonymous says:

      Not have them in the first place. 

      • Anonymous says:

        A Good parent is ALWAYS a Good Parent. Some parents have rough patches but their ability to care and love a child/children doesn't change. This arguement will be heated until the end of days. Until you know the circumstances of every individual please don't label everyone under the same umbrella. If we all thought the way you think about "not having them in the first place" maybe you would not be here typing your remarks as you would never have been born.

        You want a true eye-opener into the mess we have in Cayman about parents and support from family…..take a visit to the Court House on a Friday and sit through the Child Maintenance hearings……you would be amazed.


    • Anonymous says:

      Wow – the finger-pointing and labling never ends in Cayman!

      There are many reasons why a woman (or man) would be a single parent: widowed/divorced/unmarried etc.  But none of those justify labling them as unfit breeders, without knowing their circumstances.

      Perhaps those negative finger-pointers would prefer to see the rampant abortion of other 'first-world' countries to be  so here.

      Even so, each parent Must be responsiblty for their own action – and their children!

      Just how RCIPS gets involved in social services is a mystery to me.

      • Anonymous says:

        The availability of abortion would mean less strain on child and family services.  It is something to consider realistically.

      • Anonymous says:

        Anonymous 10:04 provided some useful solutions.  Where are yours?

        I think that if the children are smart and ambitious enough they can arrange to entertain themselves under the supervision of an adult.  Every adult is entitled to vacation.  So the children can arrange to go to a different persons house (or pick a location) each day with one parent taking that one day off.  If the group of xhildren is a large enough group, the parent will only take one day vacation and have enough coverage during the entire christmas vacation.  Each parent would be responsible for each child's meals, but the supervision would be the parent of the day. 

        Let's try to be productive here.  Or have the children organize a beach/road clean up.  It is not about money.  It is not about recognition.  It is about Pride of keeping the island clean.  If they don't like that, how about organizing with the church groups or help out at the schools themsselves and beautify them.  There is much to gain with learning hard labour.  Especially if the children reap the immediate benefits of it aka a clean school.  They invested in it and they will more than likely keep it cleaner than if they felt that someoneelse will do it.

        Youth and Sports – Step up to the plate and offer some sports camps during these term breaks.  Swimming camps, soccer, basketball, netball, volleyball etc.  you name it!  What does this department do anyway?!

        If you want something, make it happen.  Don't wait for something to happen to you.

  2. Anonymous says:

    The police should go to the Library in George Town and see dozens of unsupervised

    kids there during the holidays. Kids going all day without food


  3. Anonymous says:

    Why don't they go down to Caymana Bay on a Friday night to see how many underaged children are seemingly hanging out there after 9/10 p.m. and are unsupervised? That may be a good start.

    Also, if they were aware that children were just dropped a public places, libraries etc, have they done anything about it, if so, what?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Lets see how far this is enforced..it looks great on paper but when the time comes to enforce it that is when everything goes to crap.

  5. Anonymous says:

    There are many threats of fines for a variety of community offences.  All of those threats lack respect and credibility without enforcement.  Police need to get visible, not just during their annual campaigns – and at some point they will actually have to start ticketing people.