THE Carnival season means increased social activities for many adults, as a result of which their children must be otherwise supervised.
The Children’s Authority of Trinidad and Tobago has again urged parents, caregivers and guardians to make the safety of children their first priority during the season.
In a statement on Monday, the authority cautioned that when making plans to attend events, parents and guardians should also make arrangements to ensure their children are safe.
The authority added that ‘leaving younger children at home in the care of older children is not an option and every attempt should be made to leave children in the care of a trusting and responsible adult’.
It also noted that while many do not take part in the festivities, they may decide to register children in a camp.
‘The authority advises parents and guardians to know the adults and camp supervisors who will be interacting with their child and request an itinerary of events,’ it stated.
‘The public is also reminded that child abandonment and neglect are offences that are liable to fines and imprisonment.’
Parents and guardians are therefore urged to put measures in place for the protection and care of their children.
The authority offered the following guidelines – Children should not be left un supervised in vehicles;
When leaving children in the care of an adult, it should be a trusted person, however;
Keep open communication with your children so they feel comfortable reporting inappropriate behaviour;
Monitor your child’s interaction with adults who show abnormal affection towards the child.
Set rules for teenagers. Know where they are at all times and let them check in often when away from home.
Monitor children at all times when at the beach, by the river or a swimming pool. Never allow a child to go into the water alone; Develop a family plan so children do not get lost.
The Authority reminded the public that child protection is everyone’s business and all incidents of child abuse, abandonment and neglect should be reported to the police at 999 or to its 24-hour hotlines at 996 or 800-2014.