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Press Release: Natchitoches Parish Initiative

Posted: Feb 8, 2017
Categories: News and Media
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Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office Media Room announces new initiative for increasing awareness regarding sex offenders.

OffenderWatch Initiative Press Release:
Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana

There will be a press conference on Wednesday, February 15, 2016, at 11:00 a.m. at 331 Lafayette Street, Natchitoches Parish Sheriff's Office Media Room to announce a new initiative for increasing awareness regarding Sex Offenders.

Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Victor Jones, in partnership with Natchitoches Public Schools Superintendent Jesse Dale Skinner, McDonald’s Regional Manager Ron Bolton, and the OffenderWatch Initiative Foundation, are deploying the Teaching Awareness to School Kids (T.A.S.K.) Program. The T.A.S.K. Program, which has been used in other communities with guidance from the OffenderWatch Initiative, is part of a concerted effort to prevent sexual abuse of our citizens.

Children at participating area schools are being provided with a T.A.S.K. Program brochure for review by their parents. The parents are then asked to have an honest discussion with the children regarding the realities of sexual abuse and the preventative measures that can be taken to keep them from becoming a victim.

The T.A.S.K. Program is a 3 step email registration process. Upon completion of the program, and with parental assistance, children will print a confirmation indicating they have completed the task and submit it to their teacher. Once the assignment has been completed, children will receive a safety prize. In Natchitoches Parish the prize is a certificate for a free Cheeseburger, small French Fries and small drink valid at either Natchitoches area McDonalds location.

The T.A.S.K. Program launches this week and ends Friday, March 15, 2017.

Here are 5 Tips to Protect Your Child:

  1. Be Completely Open with Your Child.

    Foster open communication between you and your children. They must feel safe to express their fears.

  2. Encourage Your Children to Be Cautious, Not Afraid.

    Be honest and clear about dangers, but to avoid telling them scary details. Talk in a calm and reassuring manner, and use language that is age-appropriate.

  3. Teach Children How to Recognize Suspicious Behaviors Instead of Blindly Fearing Certain People.

    Teach your children to be on the lookout for suspicious behavior in any adult. Your child should be taught that adults who exhibit the following behaviors should not be trusted:

    • Asking a child for help
    • Following a child either in a car or on foot.
    • Asking to take a child’s picture without parental consent.
    • Touching a child in ways that makes them feel scared, uncomfortable or confused.
  4. Teach Your Children to Trust Their Instincts, and That Sometimes It’s OK to Say “NO” to An Adult.

    Children must learn to trust their own feelings and know that they have every right to say “NO” when they sense something is wrong.

    Examples: Someone trying to take them somewhere, touch them inappropriately, or do anything else that crosses a boundary.

  5. Know Your Child’s Personality, Whereabouts and Daily Routine.

    Be sensitive to any and all changes in your child’s mood or behavior, and know their daily activities.

The absolute worst defense against child abuse is for the parent to say nothing. You can’t keep your kids safe by pretending the problem doesn’t exist.

By incorporating education and establishing a solid line of honest communication, your kids will be safer, smarter and happier.

In Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana there are 113 registered sex offenders.

Do You Know Your Neighborhood?

Please join us on February 15th, at 11:00am to kick off this important initiative for our childrens' safety.

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