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Door-to-Door Safety

Children are often asked to collect money or sell products for school, extracurricular activities, and other community events. While such activities can be positive, confidence building experiences for children, door-to-door solicitations pose risks for child safety, even within the confines of your own neighborhood. Parents and supervising adults should be aware of the potential hazards involved, as well as the policies and ordinances that may be in place within a school system or locality prohibiting this type of solicitation. Please call your local school district and/or local government to see what rules and laws are in force governing these activities in your area. The safest thing is to prohibit your children from participating in door-to-door solicitations. If, however, you are considering whether or not to allow your children to participate in door-to-door solicitations, please review the below-noted guidelines.

1. Children should never be allowed to participate in door-to-door solicitations without adult supervision, preferably their parents, and they should never participate in “street” solicitations where they stand in the medians of busy highways to collect money.

2. Door-to-door solicitation should only be conducted during daylight hours, never at night. Children should only solicit in neighborhoods known to them and the supervising adults.

3. Children should be under direct, line-of-sight, supervision by the supervising adults.  Children should never enter anyone’s home without CHECKING FIRST with, and being accompanied by, the supervising adults.

4. Children should never reveal personal information about themselves to anyone, including their telephone number. If a contact telephone number is needed, it should be that of the organization benefiting from the solicitation.

5. Consider other means of solicitation. For example, instead of going door-to-door, explore the possibility of having children solicit at a public place, such as a grocery store, with adult supervision. This makes it convenient for shoppers and safer for the children who are participating.

6. Parents can become involved by selling catalogued items to their friends and coworkers while children handle the order and fulfillment process.

7. Children should be encouraged to work as a team on solicitation projects, so that individual children work together instead of competing with one another. This encourages cooperation and reinforces the safety rules.

8. Parents should be encouraged to participate in their children’s solicitation activities and should be fully apprised of all aspects of the project. Parents should sign a permission slip before a child is allowed to participate.

9. Remind your children to get away from any people or situations that are threatening and to TELL you or a trusted adult if anyone or anything makes them frightened, uncomfortable, or confused.