2020 1st EDITION
Child Safety HANDBOOK A RESOURCE FOR PARENTS, CARERS AND TEACHERS
Proudly brought to you by NSW Police Legacy
CHILDRENâ€™S MENTAL HEALTH
LIGHT RAIL SAFETY
8-9 2 -4
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KEEP KIDS SAFE
MESSAGE FROM HER EXCELLENCY THE HONOURABLE MARGARET BEAZLEY AO QC GOVERNOR OF NEW SOUTH WALES The health and wellbeing of our children is everyoneâ€™s responsibility. As Patron of New South Wales Police Legacy, I am honoured to contribute a message to all parents, carers, teachers and members of the community who will read this new edition of the Child Safety Handbook. Within these pages is a wealth of pro-active and preventative measures to keep our youngest and most vulnerable members of our community healthy and safe â€“ at school and at home, with family members and with friends, while on the street and online, and during outdoor play and natural emergencies. I congratulate New South Wales Police Legacy for its continuing commitment to providing a copy of this invaluable and updated resource to parents of primary school-aged children throughout our State.
Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AO QC Governor of New South Wales
FOREWORD BY NSW MINISTER FOR POLICE AND EMERGENCY SERVICES As the Minister for Police and a father of two, I am honoured to support the NSW Police Legacy’s Child Safety Handbook. Children are the most vulnerable members of our society, and protecting the most vulnerable is our foremost priority. Knowledge is the most valuable tool we can give parents and guardians to keep their children safe, at home, at school, and in the community. The Child Safety Handbook does a great job empowering parents and guardians with a toolkit on the latest up-to-date prevention strategies. I congratulate NSW Police Legacy on the continuation of this work and encourage parents and guardians to continue using this invaluable resource.
The Hon David Elliott MP NSW Minister for Police and Emergency Services
YOUNG PEOPLE SEE, SAY & DO ONLINE?
ThinkUKnow is a free, evidence-based cyber safety program that provides presentations to Australian parents, carers and teachers and students. It provides information on the technologies young people use, the challenges they may face, and importantly, how they can be overcome. Presentations are delivered face to face or digitally. We aim to provide you with the tools to create a safer online environment for young people in your care. Our presentations cover what young people SAY, SEE and DO online.
Information For Parents: •
ThinkUKnow Australia is a partnership between the Australian Federal Police, Microsoft Australia, Datacom and the Commonwealth Bank, and is delivered in collaboration with New South Wales Police Force and other Australian law enforcement agencies. It aims to raise awareness amongst parents, carers and teachers of how young people might use technology, the challenges they may face and how to help them overcome these challenges.
Encourage your child’s school to book a ThinkUKnow presentation by completing the booking form on our website, or calling 1300 362 936 during business hours. Subscribe to our monthly e-newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest trends and issues. Visit our website www.thinkuknow.org.au for information and advice on raising children in a digital age.
Sponsored by The Hon David Elliott MP Minister for Police and Emergency Services
FOREWORD BY NSW PREMIER There is no higher priority than protecting our children, and because of this, I am very proud to support NSW Police Legacyâ€™s Child Safety Handbook. The greatest tool available to combat youth vulnerability is through knowledge. The Child Safety Handbook is an excellent tool designed to communicate prevention strategies to parents, families, friends and citizens. The following pages contain important information that can save lives and I encourage you to take the time to read through them thoroughly. I congratulate NSW Police Legacy for its invaluable work and commitment to providing such a valuable resource to help protect the youngest members of our society.
Gladys Berejiklian MP Premier of New South Wales Member for Willoughby
FOREWORD BY CHAIRPERSON NSW Police Legacy is honoured to provide the Child Safety Handbook to parents of primary school children throughout the State. This free handbook has attained an outstanding reputation as an invaluable resource guide for parents to help educate their children about key health and safety issues confronting our children today. NSW Police Legacy, in conjunction with Associated Media Group of Sydney, has been publishing this handbook for over 5 years and it gives me great pleasure that we are able to continue to provide this outstanding and current reference guide. I would especially like to extend our gratitude to the organisations whose advertising in this book has made it possible to produce the Child Safety Handbook as well as enabling NSW Police Legacy to continue to support the bereaved families of deceased Police Officers across New South Wales.
Gary Merryweather Chairperson NSW Police Legacy
FOREWORD BY NSW COMMISSIONER OF POLICE Childhood should be full of happy memories, as kids learn about the world and develop the skills they will need as they grown and learn. While lack of inhibition and risk taking are characteristic of growing children they can also be vulnerable, particularly in circumstances that they have not previously experienced. The best preparation for those times is learning. Knowledge is power and the NSW Police Legacy Child Safety Handbook gives power to parents, carers and teachers in the form of advice on safety at school, at home, indoors, outdoors and on personal safety. It also provides advice on what to do in emergencies. Prevention from harm is the best way to protect our children and this handbook focuses on practical ways that we can prevent our children from coming into harm’s way. This edition of the handbook continues NSW Police Legacy’s tradition of community support. It’s work, tireless and worthwhile, has the support of all members of the NSW Police Force. Well done and thank you to NSW Police Legacy and to the businesses that have supported this publication.
M.J Fuller APM Commissioner of Police
oght call. Know number the righ to c USEFUL CONTACTS
TRIPLE ZERO (000) For emergencies or life threatening situations
POLICE ASSISTANCE LINE (131 444)
CRIME STOPPERS (1800 333 000)
For non emergencies
To provide crime information anonymously
m. phone. Remember You nevertoknow save when these you numbers will need to your them. phone NAME
Alcohol & Drug Information & Counselling Service (24 hours)
1800 422 599
13 11 14 (24 hours)
Alcoholics Anonymous Australia
1300 222 222
Marine Rescue NSW
02 9450 2468 or call 000
1300 728 000
1300 789 978 (24/7)
Mental Health Foundation
1800 011 511 (24/7)
Mission Australia Help Line
13 11 14
National Security Hotline
1800 123 400
NSW Rural Fire
1800 679 737
1800 880 176
1300 1300 52
Poisons Information Centre
131 126 (24 hours)
13 7848 (13 QUIT)
Rape Crisis Centre
1800 424 017
Rape & Domestic Violence Counselling Line
1800 737 732 / 1800 RESPECT
1800 176 453
Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network (ACORN)
1800 1234 00
Australian Drug Foundation
1300 85 85 84
B Beyond Blue
Australian Childhood Foundation (counselling for children affected by abuse)
1300 22 4636
O Office of the e-Safety Commissioner
C Child Protection Helpline
Crime Stoppers Hotline
1300 333 000
D Dental Hospital Service (Emergency Only)
(02) 9293 3333
Department of Community Services (DOCS) Helpline
132 111 (24 hrs)
Domestic Violence Line
1800 65 64 63
Domestic Violence Advocacy Service
Q Quitline – for counselling
www.domesticviolence.nsw. gov.au www.1800respect.org.au
Family Drug Help
1300 660 068
Family Drug Support Australia
1300 368 186 (24/7)
Family Relationship Advice Line
1800 050 321
Fire & Rescue NSW
G Gender Centre (services for people with gender issues)
(02) 9569 2366
(03) 9027 0100
Health Helpline (24/7)
1800 022 222
I I can Quit
13 7848 (13 QUIT)
Indigenous Women's Legal Contact Line (Domestic Violence)
1800 639 784
1800 600 700.
J Juvenile Fire Awareness and Intervention Program
Salvation Army Care Line
13 72 58 / 13 SALVOS
State Emergency Service (SES)
Sexual Assault Crisis Line
1800 806 292
Suicide Call Back Service
1300 659 467 (24/7)
Sydney Childrens Hospital Randwick
(02) 9382 1111
The Childrens Hospital Westmead
(02) 9845 0000
Transcultural Mental Health Centre
(02) 9840 3767 (during business hours) Freecall for rural and remote areas of NSW: 1800 648 911
Translating and Interpreting Service
13 14 50 (interpreter over the telephone)
1800 801 501
K Kids Help Line
www.reachout.com 1300 364 277
1800 55 1800
Womens Legal Service NSW (Domestic Violence)
CONTENTS NSW Governor Foreword NSW Police Minister Foreword NSW Premier Foreword NSW Police Legacy Chairperson Foreword NSW Police Commissioner Foreword Useful Contacts PERSONAL SAFETY
1 2 3 4 5 6
10 - 13
What is child abuse? Parents - What can I do? How do I know if a child or young person is being abused? Neglect Physical abuse Sexual abuse Psychological harm Mandatory Reporters What is mandatory reporting? Who are mandatory reporters? How do I make a report? Responding to and reporting risk of abuse and neglect Quick guide to using the mandatory reporting guide SAFETY AT SCHOOL
15 - 19
Australian Student Wellbeing Framework Bullying What is bullying? What can I do if my child is being bullied? How do I know if my child is being bullied? What if my child has witnessed bullying? What if I think my child is displaying bullying behaviour? Help your child be resilient Beyond bullying What will my school have in place to deal with bullying? SAFETY AT HOME Parent’s guide to online safety Cyberbullying I think my child is being bullied What to do Help and resources Blind and Curtain Cord Safety Toppling Furniture Button Battery Safety Home Pool Safety Basic First Aid Allergic Reactions Sprains & Strains DRSABCD Action Plan Bleeding First Aid for Burns and Scalds Burns and Scalds Preparing for Emergencies
20 - 27
HEALTH AND SAFETY
28 - 41
Children’s Mental Health and Wellbeing What is children’s mental health? Should I be concerned? Responding to children who may be experiencing mental health difficulties What kinds of mental health difficulties do children experience? Coronavirus (COVID-19) Talking to children about Coronavirus (COVID-19) Safety tips for parents and guardians Advice for parents Symptoms Healthy eating for children Dental health Tooth Decay Cleaning Teeth Tips to prevent dental disease Dental Emergencies Teeth Development Food allergy or intolerance? What is an allergy? How common is allergy? What is Anaphylaxis? What are the signs of an allergic reaction? How to give an Epipen Healthy kids NSW Healthy School Canteen Strategy Asthma Diabetes Immunisation About Immunisation How Immunisation Works Why Vaccinate Vaccinating on time Side effects Keeping records Where to vaccinate
Safety in Cars Seat Belt Safety What you must not do General safety in the car Driver distraction Safe travel Mobile phone use Driveway Safety Kids in hot cars Train Safety Rail Crossing Safety Light Rail Safety School Bus Safety Ferry Safety OUTDOOR SAFETY
STREET SMART Road Safety Keeping your children safe Pedestrian Safety RidingSafety
80 - IBC
Talking to your kids aged 15-17 Binge drinking – putting things in perspective Talking to your kids aged 9-14 Top 10 tips for parents
Publishing, CILTA AWAR by Associat
FIRE, FLOOD & STORM SAFETY 42 - 57 Fire Safety Keep Looking When Cooking Smoke Alarms Plan a Safe Escape Barbeque Safety Bush Fire Safety Prepare / Act / Survive Discuss, Prepare, Know, Keep What to do during a fire Emergency Information Fire Danger Rating Storm, Flood and Tsunami Safety Stormsafe Your emergency checklist Floodsafe Tsunamisafe
Sun Safety SLIP, SLOP, SLAP, SEEK, SLIDE Beach Safety Rip Currents Kids on Boats Wear a life jacket Safe and responsible boating Off-Road Motorcycle Safety Skateboards, Foot Scooters and Rollerblades Kids on farms Play safety Vehicle safety Farm water safety
Produced, published and distributed on behalf of NSW Police Legacy by: Associated Media Group Pty Ltd 174 Willoughby Road Crows Nest NSW 2065 T: 02 9437 5155 www.amgroup.net.au Special thanks to: NSW Police Force Fire & Rescue NSW NSW Rural Fire Service NSW Education & Communities eSafety Commissioner SES NSW NSW Health To support future editions of this handbook T: 02 9437 5155 E: email@example.com Copyright © NSW Police Legacy Ltd - Dec 2013
1st Edition - 2020
DISCLAIMER:This publication is issued on terms and understanding that: (a) the publisher, NSW Police Legacy, authors and editors are not responsible for the results of any action taken or advice followed or for any error in or omission from any information printed in this publication; and (b) the publisher, NSW Police Legacy, authors and editors expressly disclaim all and any liability and responsibility to any person, whether a purchaser or reader of this publication or not, in respect of anything, and of the consequences of anything done or omitted to be done by any such person in reliance, whether wholly or partially, upon the whole or any part of the contents of this publication.
Have you washed your hands?
Clean your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand rub to protect yourself from viruses.
Find the facts health.nsw.gov.au/coronavirus 8
CHILD SAFETY HANDBOOK A VITAL HEALTH & SAFETY RESOURCE FOR PARENTS AND CARERS OF YOUNG CHILDREN
SPECIAL THANKS TO OUR CONTRIBUTORS:
CHILD PROTECTION WHAT IS CHILD ABUSE? There are four different types of child abuse: • physical abuse • psychological harm • sexual abuse • neglect Child abuse can be a single incident that harms a child (including unborn) or young person, or a number of different incidents that take place over time. The Child and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 (the Care Act) defines harm as any detrimental effect of a significant nature on the child’s physical, psychological or emotional wellbeing. For harm to be significant, the detrimental effect on a child’s wellbeing must be substantial or serious, more than transitory and must be demonstrable in the child’s presentation, functioning or behaviour.
PARENTS What can I do? Protecting children and young people from harm is everyone’s business. If are concerned about a child or young person’s safety, you should report your concern to the Child Protection Helpline on 13 2111. This will help to prevent or stop the abuse and protect the child from further harm. Your report will be confidential. We won’t tell anyone who reported the abuse or neglect to us and you don’t have to tell us your name if you don’t want to. HOW DO I KNOW IF A CHILD OR YOUNG PERSON IS BEING ABUSED? There are common physical and behavioural signs that may indicate abuse or neglect. These signs do not necessarily mean abuse or neglect has been, or is, occurring.
NEGLECT Signs in children or young people: • low weight for age and/or failure to thrive and develop • untreated physical problems e.g. sores, serious nappy rash & urine scalds, significant dental decay • poor standards of hygiene i.e. child or young person consistently unwashed • poor complexion and hair texture • child not adequately supervised for their age • scavenging or stealing food and focus on basic survival • extended stays at school, public places, other homes • longs for or indiscriminately seeks adult affection • rocking, sucking, head-banging • poor school attendance PHYSICAL ABUSE Signs in children or young people • bruising to face, head or neck, other bruising and marks which may show the shape of the object that caused it e.g. belt buckle, hand print • lacerations and welts • drowsiness, vomiting, fits or pooling of blood in the eyes, which may suggest head injury • adult bite marks and scratches • fractures of bones, especially in children under three years old • dislocations, sprains, twisting • burns and scalds (including cigarette burns) • multiple injuries or bruises • explanation of injury offered by the child or young person is not consistent with their injury • abdominal pain caused by ruptured internal organs, without a history of major trauma • swallowing of poisonous substances, alcohol or other harmful drugs • general indicators of female genital mutilation e.g. having a ‘special operation’ SEXUAL ABUSE Signs in children or young people: • bruising or bleeding in the genital area • sexually transmitted diseases • bruising to breasts, buttocks, lower abdomen or thighs • child or young person or their friend telling you about it, directly or indirectly • describing sexual acts • sexual knowledge or behaviour inappropriate for the child’s age • going to bed fully clothed • regressive behaviour e.g. sudden return to bedwetting or soiling
• self-destructive behaviour e.g. drug dependency, suicide attempts, self-mutilation • child being in contact with a known or suspected paedophile • anorexia or over-eating • adolescent pregnancy • unexplained accumulation of money and gifts • persistent running away from home • risk taking behaviours - self harm, suicide attempts
• physical or mental health issues for the parent or caregiver which affects their ability to care for the child or young person in their care • the parent or caregivers’ abuse of alcohol or other drugs which affects their ability to care for the child or young person in their care You should also consider the child or young person’s age or other vulnerabilities, for example disability or chronic illness.
PSYCHOLOGICAL HARM All types of abuse and neglect harm children psychologically. The term ‘psychological harm’ or ‘emotional abuse’ applies to behaviour which damages the confidence and self-esteem of a child or young person, resulting in serious emotional deprivation or trauma.
MANDATORY REPORTERS What is mandatory reporting? Mandatory reporting is the legislative requirement for selected classes of people to report suspected child abuse and neglect to government authorities. In NSW, mandatory reporting is regulated by the Children and Young Person’s (Care and Protection) Act 1998 (the Care Act).
Signs in children or young people: • constant feelings of worthlessness about life and themselves • unable to value others • lack of trust in people • lack of people skills necessary for daily functioning • extreme attention-seeking behaviour • is obsessively eager to please or obey adults • takes extreme risks, is markedly disruptive, bullying or aggressive • is highly self-critical, depressed or anxious • suicide threats or attempts • persistent running away from home Signs in parents or caregivers: • constant criticism, belittling, teasing of a child or young person, or ignoring or withholding praise and attention • excessive or unreasonable demands • persistent hostility and severe verbal abuse, rejection and scapegoating • belief that a particular child or young person in their care is bad or ‘evil’ • using inappropriate physical or social isolation as punishment • domestic violence Remember, the above are only possible signs of abuse and neglect. The presence of these signs does not necessarily mean abuse and neglect has been, or is, occurring. It is also important to keep in mind the life circumstances of the child, young person and their family. The following risk factors are associated with increased risk of harm for children and young people: • social or geographic isolation of the child, young person or family, including lack of access to extended family • previous abuse or neglect of a brother or sister family history of violence including domestic violence
Learn more about Child Abuse
Download more information about Child Abuse and Neglect
Who are mandatory reporters? Mandatory reporters are people who deliver the following services, wholly or partly, to children as part of their paid or professional work: • Health care (e.g. registered medical practitioners, specialists, general practice nurses, midwifes, occupational therapists, speech therapists, psychologists, dentists and other allied health professionals working in sole practice or in public or private health practices) • Welfare (e.g. psychologists, social workers, caseworkers and youth workers) • Education (e.g. teachers, counsellors, principals) • Children’s services (e.g. child care workers, family day carers and home-based carers) • Residential services (e.g. refuge workers) • Law enforcement (e.g. police). HOW DO I MAKE A REPORT? If you are a mandatory reporter, you can make non-imminent suspected risk of significant harm reports to the Child Protection Helpline either by using eReporting or by phone. All urgent reports must be made by phone to the Helpline on 132 111. If you are a mandatory reporter employed in a government agency that has a Child Wellbeing Unit (CWU) you can call your CWU for help in identifying whether a case meets the statutory threshold of risk of significant harm. If you are a mandatory reporter employed by a non-government organisation or a government agency without a CWU, you can report matters to the Child Protection Helpline. You are encouraged to use eReporting and the Mandatory Reporter Guide (MRG) on the Childstory Reporter website before making a report to the Helpline. eReporting and the MRG can be found at Childstory Reporter at reporter.childstory.nsw.gov.au.
To contact the Child Protection Helpline call
132 111 Mandatory reporters should first complete the Mandatory Reporter Guide at reporter.childstory.nsw.gov.au
Make a difference. Become a carer. Do you have room in your heart and home to make a difference to a childâ€™s life? More foster carers are needed across NSW. To find out what type of care would suit your family, contact us today. My Forever Family NSW is a government funded program designed to recruit, support, train and advocate for foster and kinship carers, guardians and adoptive parents from out-of-home care across the state.
START YOUR CARER JOURNEY WITH US w w w. m y f o reve r f a m i l y.o rg .a u 12
The MRG supports mandatory reporters to: • determine whether a report to the Child Protection Helpline is needed for concerns about possible abuse or neglect of a child (including unborn) or young person • identify alternative ways to support vulnerable children, young people and their families where a mandatory reporter’s response is better served
outside the statutory child protection system RESPONDING TO AND REPORTING RISK OF ABUSE AND NEGLECT This quick guide will assist you in using the MRG Learn more when responding to and reporting risk of abuse and about Mandatory neglect. The MRG is online at: Reporting reporter.childstory.nsw.gov.au
QUICK GUIDE TO USING THE MANDATORY REPORTING GUIDE STEP 1 – GET SUFFICIENT INFORMATION Get essential details to enter into the online MRG: • child or young person’s details (name, address, DOB, details of siblings) • incident details (date, type of risk, person’s causing or contributing to harm) • impact of the incident on the child or young person • Network of support around the young person You can get this information by: • engaging with the child or young person and related services • exchanging information with other prescribed bodies working with the child or young person and their family. You are permitted to do this under Chapter 16A of the Care Act. STEP 2 – DECIDE WHAT TO DO Use all of the information available to you to appraise the risk, needs and strengths of the family. If you work for the Department of Education, NSW Police Force, NSW Health (includes all registered medical practitioner or general practice nurse, all employees of NSW health services, staff from Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service, and Affiliated Health Organisations), you can contact your Child Wellbeing Unit (CWU) for assistance with this appraisal. STEP 3 – USE THE MRG • If the outcome of the MRG is ‘Immediate Report to the Child Protection Helpline’ or ‘Report to the Child Protection Helpline’, contact the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111 and have ready the essential details from Step 1 & the outcome of the MRG. You can also make an eReport for non-immediate matters at https://kidsreport.facs.nsw.gov.au. • If the outcome of the MRG is ‘Contact your CWU’ or ‘Continue to monitor and support’ – go to Step 4. • Even if a report is required, proceed to Step 4. • It is recommended that mandatory reporters complete the MRG on each occasion they have risk concerns, regardless of their level of experience or expertise. Each circumstance is different and every child and young person is unique. STEP 4 – FIND LOCAL HELP Your services Consider what additional steps your service can take, including: • whether your service is best placed to discuss your concerns with the family • whether your service can offer to provide additional interventions or change your current interventions to further address risk factors. Beyond your service Explore appropriate support services for the child or young person and their family. Any of the following options can assist you: • Where you have access, call your CWU to discuss how you can appropriately assist the child within the capacity of your role and to get advice about referral pathways. Call Health CWU on 1300 480 420 or call Education CWU on 9269 9400 • Contact your local Family Referral Service (www.familyreferralservice.com.au) if you would like help referring the family, child or young person to local support services such as housing or respite • Visit the Human Services Network (www.hsnet.nsw.gov.au) website to self-access a broad range of services • Contact NSW Family Services Inc. (www.fams.asn.au) to access support to nongovernment, not-for-profit organisation staff working with vulnerable children and families.
The Hub is where you can access the Australian Student Wellbeing Framework and is a space for educators, parents and students to find resources to build safe, inclusive and connected school communities that promote wellbeing and learning.
LEADERSHIP Visible leadership to inspire positive school communities
INCLUSION Inclusive and connected school culture
SUPPORT Wellbeing and support for positive behaviour
STUDENT VOICE PARTNERSHIPS Effective family and community partnerships
Authentic student participation
About Wellbeing As a parent you know that your child’s success at school is linked to their wellbeing. You want your child to be happy and well and to enjoy everything that school offers.
Wellbeing and learning go hand in hand. Parents have a significant role to play in laying the foundation for their child’s wellbeing from their earliest years. When your child feels connected to their family, peers and teachers they feel safe and secure and know they’ll be supported throughout their learning journey. Safe and trusting relationships create a positive learning environment where wellbeing can flourish. The Australian Student Wellbeing Framework supports you to work with the school to promote your child’s wellbeing and learning.
SAFETY AT SCHOOL BULLYING Your child has the right to feel welcome and safe at school. We’re working hard to make sure our school communities are nurturing and supportive places where all students can learn and develop into caring, resilient and confident adults. WHAT IS BULLYING? It may seem obvious what bullying is, but there is a difference between students ‘not getting on’ and bullying each other. Learning how to resolve conflict and negotiate with people who have different personalities and opinions are important life skills that parents and schools need to help students develop. Bullying is repeated verbal, physical, social or psychological behaviour that is harmful and involves the misuse of power by an individual or group towards one or more persons. Cyberbullying refers to bullying through information and communication technologies. Bullying can involve humiliation, domination, intimidation, victimisation and all forms of harassment including that based on sex, race, disability, homosexuality or transgender. Bullying of any form or for any reason can have long term effects on those involved including bystanders. Bullying can come in many forms for example: • Being hit, tripped, kicked, pinched etc. • Being called names, teased, put down etc. • Being threatened, stalked, gestures etc. • Being ignored, having rumours spread about you, excluding someone etc. • Insulting someone in chat rooms, sending cruel or threatening emails/text messages; using the web, chat rooms or mobile phones to spread rumours or threaten someone or information about someone etc. All forms of bullying between students are taken seriously by NSW public schools. However, any school situation that is causing your child concern, whether or not it fits the definition of bullying, should be reported to the school. Although the term “bullying” has a specific meaning and a school’s Anti-bullying Plan sets out the processes for preventing and responding to student bullying, schools also have a range of policies and practices, including welfare and discipline policies that apply to student behaviour generally. What can I do if my child is being bullied? If your child is being bullied it is not always easy for you as a parent to know when and how to support.
The first step is to stay calm and try and get all the facts. While it may be a case of bullying, it might also simply be the result of poor communication by one or both children. Kids often speak before they think and misunderstandings happen easily, especially online. By taking the time to understand the situation and remaining calm, you are helping your child. Sometimes, as a first step, your child may just want some advice about things they could do the try to manage the situation. At other times it is important that action is taken immediately. It is important to: • Listen calmly to your child. • Show concern and support. • Let your child know that telling you about the bullying was the right thing to do. • Find out where and when it has been happening, who has been involved and if anyone else has seen it. • Discuss the things your child has already done to try to solve the problem and suggest other things your child might try. • Report the situation to your child’s school. • Work with your child’s school to solve the problem. • Encourage your child to report any further bullying incidents to a teacher they trust at the school. • Let your child know how much you disapprove of bullying and why. Technology has increased the ways bullying can happen. Mobile phones, emails, websites, chat rooms, social networking sites or instant messaging can all be used to bully others. If you believe your child is being cyberbullied, don’t ban them from the technology. Technology has an
Learn more about bullying
Watch a video on bullying
Download more information about bullying
HOW DO I KNOW IF MY CHILD IS BEING BULLIED? Some of the signs that a child is bullied may include: • unwillingness or refusal to go to school • not doing well at school • becoming withdrawn • being tearful • loss of confidence • sleeping problems • refusing to talk about what’s wrong If your child seems depressed, unusually upset or physically injured in some way and is unwilling to discuss it with you, consider talking to your school counsellor or your family doctor. Your child may benefit from specialised assistance.
SAFETY AT SCHOOL
increasingly important role for young people both for their social development and in their learning. Discourage them from rereading the upsetting messages or comments because it compounds the hurt and throws the whole incident out of perspective. Do try to find ways for them to enjoy themselves away from the computer, doing the things that make them feel good about themselves. Children often worry about being labelled “a dobber” and beg parents not to tell the school. However, bullying is a serious matter which is unlikely to be resolved if it’s ignored. Schools are able to manage the situation and provide effective support when they have all the facts. As a parent or caregiver, you have an important part to play in helping your child, and the school deal with bullying. Don’t approach the other students involved. No parent will appreciate you reprimanding their child and it will always make the situation much worse than if you remain calm and go through the right channels by contacting the school.
Your school’s Anti-bullying Plan will outline how bullying can be reported at your school, but you can always make an appointment with your school principal. You may like to take your partner or a friend with you to the meeting, and that’s normally fine too. Just let the principal know. If you need an interpreter, the school can arrange that. Be sure to tell them when you make the appointment. What if my child has witnessed bullying? Tell the school. Bullying also hurts other students as well as the student who has experienced the bullying. Bystanders who observe bullying or are pressured to join in are also likely to be affected and will need support. It’s important for all children to understand that bullying isn’t okay, even if they are not directly involved. If your child has witnessed bullying you can help them, and help to keep other children safe by encouraging them to ask a teacher for help. This is very important if anyone’s safety is
SAFETY AT SCHOOL
in jeopardy. Students should always think about their own safety and the safety of other people when deciding what to do. You could also encourage your child to do any one or a combination of the following depending on the circumstances: • Tell the person doing the bullying that what they are doing is bullying. • Tell the person doing the bullying to stop. • Refuse to join in with the bullying. • Tell other bystanders not to encourage the person doing the bullying. • Support the person who is being bullied. • Encourage the person being bullied to tell their parents or a teacher. What if I think my child is displaying bullying behaviour? Discovering that your child has been displaying bullying behaviour can come as a huge shock for parents. Your first reaction may be defensive. However, children who engage in bullying behaviour also need support to learn how to behave appropriately. Stay calm and discuss the issue with the principal of your child’s school. Work together with the school to make it clear to your child that bullying isn’t okay and to develop support strategies for your child. It may also be useful to make an appointment with the school counsellor. Help your child be resilient Kids can sometimes focus on what’s going wrong in their lives, and be less aware of the other friends, hobbies, sports and activities they enjoy. A few hours with friends can remind your child that there are good people around who care for and support them. Beyond bullying Sometimes bullying or cyberbullying can involve criminal behaviour such as violence, threats, intimidation or inciting violence. If you or your child has received threats of physical or sexual violence or has been physically attacked you should immediately consider contacting your local police as well as your school for assistance. The school may report a matter to the police as well. What will my school have in place to deal with bullying? Parents and schools work together to help students develop good citizenship and the communication and relationship skills that help prevent bullying behaviour. At school your child will be learning about their rights and responsibilities and will be supported to develop the skills to treat others with respect,
communicate their ideas and feelings appropriately and deal with conflict. The NSW Department of Education requires all NSW government schools to have an Anti-bullying Plan that complies with the Bullying: Preventing & Responding to Student Bullying in Schools Policy. You can ask for a copy of your school’s Plan from your school. Many schools also make their Anti-bullying Plan available on their websites. The school’s Anti-bullying Plan will explain what is considered to be bullying behaviour and how that behaviour is viewed by the school. It will outline what responsibilities schools, students and parents have to prevent and respond to bullying behaviour, how bullying can be reported and what will happen when it is. Your school will take action when it has been reported that a student has been bullied by another student at school or during a school activity that is held away from school. The school can also take action in response to bullying behaviour between students outside of school hours or off the school premises where there is a clear and close connection between the school and the conduct of the students. The response of the school to a reported incident of bullying or cyberbullying will depend on the details of the particular incident and may range from support to disciplinary action. Remember the school will need time to investigate and to talk to teachers and other students. All NSW public schools have access to school counsellors who can help children deal with problems and become more resilient. School counsellors are experienced teachers who have a degree in psychology and graduate qualifications in school counselling. They can help students who are feeling sad or anxious, or are having difficulties in their relationships with other students. School counsellors may work across more than one school, so you will need to speak with the principal to organise an appointment for your child.
CONTACTS PARENT LINE Parent Line is a telephone counselling, information and referral service for parents of children ages 0 to 18, who live in New South Wales. Parents, grandparents and carers anywhere in the state can call Parent Line on 1300 1300 52 for no more than the cost of a local call. www.parentline.org.au KIDS HELPLINE Tel 1800 55 1800 - 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for advice on child health and parenting. www.kidshelpline.com.au
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SAFETY AT SCHOOL
IS THE FUTURE OF LEARNING IN LINE WITH THE FUTURE? Due to the constant evolution and ever-expanding developments in technology, the workplace of the future will be unrecognisable from that of today. In order to equip the students of today for the jobs of tomorrow, a clear understanding of the social skills required to match technical expertise is undeniably essential. One of the unfortunate byproducts of this rapid advancement in technology has been an increase in cyberbullying. Students of today face a distinctly different set of challenges to that of past generations. For students, the internet and social media provide an unlimited source of information and an ability to connect with others, yet the questions remain; how can we ensure they remain safe and free from harm? The Issue: A Snapshot Whether they are in or out of the classroom, students constantly interact with technology in some form or another. Interactive technology has become intrinsically linked into the everyday lives of young people. While there are many benefits to be had, glaring realities exist that educators must address in regards to the online welfare of their students. Undertaken through various channels and means, cyberbullying in the school environment takes place online. This typically takes the form of an effort to hurt, harass or embarrass a fellow student. According the Australia ESafety Office, 1 in 5 students experiences cyberbullying. This data is further compounded by research from Reach Out indicating a dramatic rise in the number of incidents for Australian students aged 14-16. Students who fall victim or experience instance of cyberbullying are also likely to be negatively affected in the classroom. Frightened, ashamed or socially ostracised, a student’s ability to perform academically can be hampered by these unfortunate forms of online bullying. Addressing the Issue Fortunately, there are organisations in Australia proactively attempting to address this issue. The Australian Computing Academy’s ‘Digital Technologies’ initiative provides vital skills and resources to teachers and students in the everevolving digital field. In particular, this provides theory and practical skills to students from Year 1 to Year 8 in the vital areas of digital systems, data collection, algorithms and implementation. Although many students are provided with the background information and theory, little has been done to effectively incorporate the innovative
technology required into schools. If this were to change, however, students would be able to learn both the technological and social skills required for success in their future career of choice. This begs a fundamental question: how can the educators of today effectively prepare students for the technologically driven job market of tomorrow? Security and Safety in the Classroom Every young person deserves the right to feel safe and secure in school, particularly while they are online. Recognising both the scale and scope of this increasingly important issue, Acer have partnered with Windows 10 to offer devices equipped with built in security and privacy features. No matter the environment, Acer’s Proshield technology works to protect students from getting hacked and their data from being accessed and distributed by cyber bullies. Through the addition of biometric authentication, data encryption and file shredding capabilities, students are able to remain safe from unauthorised access and intrusion. Recent research into this technology uncovered a 33 per cent reduction into security breaches following its implementation. Windows 10 security software also affords parents the ability to place restrictions on their child’s Acer devices. This technology, available on the Acer Spin 5 and TravelMate B118 devices, allows parents to safeguard their children through a restriction on particularly websites, apps and even the imposition of a screen time limit. Protecting Our Future While equipping our students with the requisite knowledge and capacity to understand cyber security is critical, the technology used in the classroom itself is equally important. Protecting our students from cyberbullying is a vital tool to improve their well-being, output and everyday educational experience. In order to understand the importance of cyber security in the future, students of today must learn in a first-hand capacity. The addition of Windows 10 embedded Acer devices into the classroom seeks to create a generation of students with a deep appreciation just how vital cyber security can be – not only now but in the future. For more information visit: byod.acer.com.au www.childsafetyhub.com.au
SAFETY AT HOME PARENT’S GUIDE TO ONLINE SAFETY With the aim to help guide children and young people toward safe, enjoyable experiences online, the Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner (the Office) hopes to encourage behavioural change — where Australian children and young people act responsibly online—just as they would offline. To achieve this, we hope to both educate and help prevent harmful online behaviour from occurring in the first place. As parents, you know your child better than anyone, and have the best opportunity to help educate them so they can explore, safely.
Learn more about Cyberbullying
Learn more about Online Safety
A guide to online bullying for parents and carers Online bullying can have a devastating impact on young people, whose online life is a key part of their identity and how they interact socially. Cyberbullying behaviour takes many forms, such as sending abusive messages, hurtful images or videos, nasty online gossip, excluding or humiliating others, or creating fake accounts in someone’s name to trick or humiliate them. I think my child is being bullied Your child may not tell you if they are experiencing bullying behaviour online because of a fear it might make things worse for them or they may lose access to their devices and the internet. Signs to watch for: • being upset after using the internet or their mobile phone • changes in personality, becoming more withdrawn, anxious, sad or angry • appearing more lonely or distressed • unexpected changes in friendship groups • a decline in their school work • changes in their sleep patterns • avoidance of school or clubs • a decline in their physical health • becoming secretive about their online activities and mobile phone use What to do Whatever the age of your child Try to resist immediately taking away their device • Removing your child’s phone or computer could be really unhelpful. Cutting off their online access does not teach them about online safety or help build resilience. It could alienate them from their peers, and it also removes an essential tool for them to communicate and connect with friends. Stay calm and open — don’t panic • You want your child to feel confident that you’re not immediately going to get upset, angry or anxious if they tell you about the situation. You want them to know they can talk to you and feel heard. • The best way to do this is make sure you have an open dialogue from the beginning. Talk to them without being judgemental or angry, and make
them feel like they can come to you with anything, without fear of being punished. Listen, think, pause • Gauge the scale of the problem. Does it exist in a peer group or is it more widespread? Is it a few remarks here and there? Or is it more serious? Empathise with your child and let them know that you understand how they feel. • How badly is it affecting your child personally? If the bullying itself is not very intense, but your child seems quite seriously affected, this could be a symptom of something larger. In this case you may need to seek help, from a school counsellor, a helpline, or an external professional. • Try not to respond until you have had time to work out the best course of action. Reassure your child you are working on it and will come together again very soon to talk through some options. Let them know you are there if they feel like they need to talk in the meantime. Act to protect your child if necessary • If your child is being threatened, or if they indicate a wish to harm themselves, you should get professional help. Call Triple Zero (000) immediately, if their physical safety is at risk. Empower your child • Wherever possible, try to build your child’s confidence and help them make wise decisions for themselves, rather than telling them what to do. • If you feel they may be struggling to open up to you, connect them with other trusted adults or with professional support. Collect evidence • Before you or your child block someone or delete posts or other bullying material, take screenshots and collect evidence including dates and times. • The evidence may be useful if the bullying behaviour continues and you need a record of how long it has been going on. You may also need evidence if you want to report it. • However, if the bullying material involves sexualised images, be aware that possessing or sharing such images of people under 18 may be a crime, even if you have just taken a screenshot for evidence purposes. For information about relevant laws in Australia, visit Youth Law Australia. You can also read our advice about sharing intimate images sending nudes and sexting.
SAFETY AT HOME Manage contact with others • Advise your child not to retaliate or respond to bullying messages, as sometimes people say hurtful things just to get a response and it could make things worse. If they have already responded, encourage them not to respond further. • Help your child to block or unfriend the person sending the messages to limit contact with them. • Help your child change their privacy settings to restrict who can see their posts and profile page. Advice on privacy settings is available in the eSafety Guide. • Encourage your child to ask their friends whether mean content is still being posted and if so, ask them to report it. Report • Many social media services, games, apps and websites make it easy to report content posted by other people. Our eSafety Guide has links to report abusive content and online safety information. • If serious cyberbullying is affecting your child and you need help to get the material removed from a social media service or other platform, we can help. • You can make a cyberbullying report to eSafety on your child’s behalf if they are under 18 years of age. It may be useful for you to read the frequently asked questions about making a report and information about how we handle cyberbullying reports.
Consider seeking support from your child’s school • Your child’s school may have a policy in place to address cyberbullying and may be able to provide support, whether or not the bullying is from a student at your child’s school. • With your child’s agreement, talk to their teacher or the school counsellor. Encourage positive connections and coping strategies • Try to keep your child engaged with interests like sports or dance that connect them with other young people outside school, or with activities that involve extended family. These things will also remind your child that they are loved and lovable. • Help your child identify tools they can use to work through the current situation, as well as help build resilience for any future challenges. Check out good habits start young for some tips. For more information visit esafety.gov.au/parents
Learn 7 ways parents can manage web connected devices in the home
Learn how to lodge a cyberbullying complaint
HELP AND RESOURCES
Check out the following support services and resources to help you keep your family safe online. The Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner esafety.gov.au The Office’s website contains information and related links to support parents in keeping kids safe online. Resources include practical, action focussed advice, videos, games, support, and research-based information, and everything is free of charge. School support Many schools have detailed policies and procedures in place to help support children online, including how to manage issues like cyberbullying, sexting and
other online concerns. The Department of Education policies in each state provide information for students, teachers, parents and the broader community to help raise awareness and counter the inappropriate use of technology. For more information, contact your child’s school. eHeadspace eheadspace.org.au eHeadspace is a confidential, free and secure space where young people aged 12 to 25 or their family can chat, email or speak on the phone with a qualified youth mental health professional.
Parentline parentline.com.au or phone 1300 30 1300 Parentline provides a counselling, information and referral service for Parents that operates 7days a week between 8am-10pm.
Online counselling If you suspect or know that a child is being negatively impacted by things happening to them online, consider seeking professional support for them.
Lifeline lifeline.org.au or phone 13 11 14 Lifeline provides free 24hour crisis counselling and information about support services.
Kids Helpline kidshelpline.com.au or phone 1800 55 1800 Kids Helpline service provides free, confidential online counselling for children and young people. Kids Helpline also provides young people experiencing problems online with free and private web chat counselling.
Crime Stoppers crimestoppers.com.au or phone 1800 333 000 Crimestoppers or your local police can assist with concerns about children’s personal safety.
1. Check your blind and curtain cord
Check for loose or looped cords
child can reach from the floor or b on furniture.
SAFETY AT HOME
Immediately tie cords out of reach
Steps for protectingaway any furniture children might children reach them.
Take these four simple steps to ensure that blind Do this anywhere you are staying, in and curtain cords/chains are out of reach of children, on holiday. particularly from children under six. 2. Secure your cords out of reach 1. Check your blind and curtain cords Buy cleats or tensioning devices Check for loose or looped cords that your cords from a hardware store or c 3. Choose safe blinds and curtains child can reach from the floor or by climbing blind shop. Buy new curtains and blinds which: on furniture. Use screws to fix each cleat or te Immediately tie cords out of reach and move a comply with the national mandatory in a place that is out of reach of c standard Learn more away any furniture children might climb on to a have warning labels to remind you of dangers about Blindthese and devices with Never secure reach them. may fail when a load is placed on Curtain Safety to children Do this anywhere you are staying, including double-sided tape or glue. a provide a way to secure cords/chainsonso holiday. there are
BLIND AND CURTAIN CORD SAFETY 1. Check your blind and curtain cords a Check for loose or looped cords that your child can reach from the floor or by climbing on furniture. a Immediately tie cords out of reach and move away any furniture children might climb on to reach them. a Do this anywhere you are staying, including on holiday.
no loops or strands that children can2. Secure your cords out of reach reach, or Buy cleats or tensioning devices for securing operate without exposed cords/chains.
2. Secure your cords out of reach a Buy cleats or tensioning devices for securing cords from a hardware store or curtain and blind shop. a Use screws to fix each cleat or tensioning device in a place that is out of reach of children. x Never secure these devices with materials that may fail when a load is placed on them, such as doublesided tape or glue. If you cannot fix your unsafe cords and chains out of reach yourself, get a reliable tradesperson to do it for you. If you are renting your home, seek help from your landlord or agent.
cords from a hardware store or curtain and blind shop.
4. Keep children away from all cords/chains Use screws to fix each cleat or tensioning device a Move anything a young child can sit in a place that is out of reach of children. in, stand or climb on (like cots, highchairs, beds, sofas, Never secure these devices with materials that tables, chairs and bookshelves) awaymay fail when a load is placed on them, such as from cords/ double-sided tape or glue. chains—even those tied around a cleat, as your child may be able to untie them. x Do not let children play near cords/chains they can reach. x Never leave children alone in a room with cords/ chains they can reach. For more information contact ACCC & BMAA
TOPPLING FURNITURE Why Anchor It? Small children have died or suffered serious injuries from unstable furniture. Small children can be trapped under furniture; unable to breathe or be hit/struck by falling furniture. You can prevent death or injury to small children when choosing and securing furniture in your home. There are simple ways to prevent death or serious injury to small children when choosing and securing furniture in your home by anchoring furniture. Buy Safe • Purchase low-set furniture or furniture with sturdy, stable and broad bases. • Look for furniture that comes with safety information or equipment for anchoring it to the walls. • Test the furniture in the shop—make sure it is stable. For example, pull out the top drawers of a chest of drawers and apply a little pressure to see how stable it is; make sure the drawers do not fall out easily.
Use Safe • Attach, mount, bolt or otherwise secure furniture to walls and floors. • Do not put heavy items on top shelves of bookcases. • Place televisions at the back of cabinets or secure them to the wall. • Discourage small children from climbing on furniture. • Do not put tempting items such as favourite toys on top of furniture that encourage children to climb up and reach. • Do not place unstable furniture near where children play. • Put locking devices on all drawers to prevent children opening them and using them as steps.
Learn how to anchor your furniture
Watch a video on Toppling furniture safety - anchor it and protect a child
For more information on toppling furniture, visit www.productsafety.gov.au/anchorfurniture
1.5 1.5 1.5
metres metres metres Maintain good hand hygiene
Stay 1.5m apart
Stay home if you are unwell
Get tested if you have symptoms
stained or black bowel motions, can indicate bleeding or ulceration somewhere in the upper or lower digestive system.
SAFETY AT HOME
How is a swallowed button battery diagnosed? Your child may need to have an x-ray of the appropriate area to locate the battery.
BUTTON BATTERIES Learn more about the dangers of button batteries
Watch a video on button battery safety
Are button batteries dangerous? Swallowing any button battery, old or new, can cause life threatening injuries and even death, especially if it becomes stuck in the oesophagus (food pipe). Batteries which become stuck in the nose or ears can also cause local burns. When swallowed, the left over electrical current in a button battery reacts with moisture to produce a strong alkali chemical. The chemical can cause serious internal burns and bleeding. The batteries How is a swallowed button battery diagnosed? can also leak chemicals which can cause serious Your child may need to have an x-ray of the burns. The coin shaped batteries are easily caught in appropriate area to locate the battery. the oesophagus, and when stuck can start to cause damage very quickly (within 2 hours). There may© beThe Children’s What are the symptoms a child who Hospital, has Hospital at Westmead,of Sydney Children’s Randwick and no early symptoms. swallowed a button battery? Children often swallow button batteries without Who is at risk? anyone knowing. Symptoms can include chest pain, Young children are at most risk of poisoning from coughing, choking, vomiting, drooling, decreased button battery ingestion. Young children are curious appetite or refusal to eat, fever, abdominal pain and like to explore by putting everything in their and general discomfort. Spitting blood or bloodmouth. This leads to more accidental ingestions. stained saliva or having very dark stained or black A toddler’s smaller body size also means they are bowel motions, can indicate bleeding or ulceration more likely to have a button battery caught in the somewhere in the upper or lower digestive system. oesophagus, causing serious damage. How can you prevent children from swallowing button batteries? • Keep button batteries and all other batteries in a child resistant locked cupboard that is atleast 1.5 metres above ground, out of reach of children. • Check that all remotes, toys and products containing button batteries have a screw to secure them. If the batteries are not secured in with a screw, keep out of reach of children. You can also secure the battery compartment with strong tape. • Buy new batteries that are in child resistant packaging ie: the packets need to be opened with • If your child is having any difficulty breathing, call 000 immediately. scissors. • Call the Poisons Information Centre • Keep spare batteries locked away, out of reach. 13 11 26. • Throw old button batteries away carefully, in an • Take your child immediately to the outside bin, out of reach of children. nearest Emergency Department for assessment and treatment. • Do not try to make your child vomit. Remember • Do not let your child eat or drink while • Call the Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 awaiting medical advice. if you suspect a battery has been swallowed. • Go to the nearest hospital emergency department. • Keep all button batteries out of reach of children If you know or just suspect that your ie; in a child resistant locked cupboard that is child has swallowed a button battery you must act immediately. atleast 1.5metres above the ground. • Share this information with family and friends.
FIRST AID FOR SWALLOWED BUTTON BATTERIES
Source: The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick and Kaleidoscope Children, Young People and Families.
SAFETY AT HOME
HOME POOL SAFETY The home pool environment is often a place of fun and enjoyment. However, home pools are a location with a high risk of drowning, particularly for children under five years of age. Drowning risks around the home Home pools and spas are obvious drowning hazards. But there are many other items and areas which present a drowning threat to young children around the home. Buckets, bathtubs, eskies (coolers), fountains, fishponds, drains, inflatable pools, and even pet bowls all pose a significant drowning risk especially to younger children. It is crucial that these are emptied, covered, put away and not left where they can fill up with water. Most toddler drowning deaths occur when parents’ attention is divided. Other siblings, preparing meals, and phone calls are just a few of the many distractions that can interfere with a parent’s supervision. Children need constant supervision when they’re in, on, or around the water. If you’re at a party or gathering don’t assume that someone is watching your child or children. It is all too possible that no one is. Nominate a designated ‘child supervisor’ and rotate the supervision responsibilities regularly. Portable Pools Portable swimming pools take several forms and include inflatable pools, pools incorporating a canvas or flexible plastic liner attached to a frame, and hard plastic pools such as wading pools. Depths vary from less than 150mm to over one metre. Portable pools pose a serious drowning risk to small children. Even with very little water, it only takes seconds for a child to drown in a portable pool. They also present a risk because owners are generally not aware of the need in most States and Territories to fence a portable pool that is 300mm deep or more. Children have also drowned in portable pools that have not been emptied and put away after use. Young children are at risk of drowning in portable pools for a number of reasons. Young children are naturally fascinated by water and are top heavy so when they lean over to look into water or reach for an object they can easily topple over and drown in just a few centimetres of water. Young children are unable to understand the concept of danger and may have difficulty in understanding that water could cause them harm. Childhood drowning is a silent event as children generally do not cry out for help.
• Check with your local council for fencing requirements. • Make sure you always actively supervise children within arms’ reach whenever they are in or around the water. • Never rely on older children to supervise younger children, no matter how confident you are in their ability. • For smaller pools ensure they are emptied and put away after use. • When not in use, store the pool securely out of reach of young children. • Ensure the pool cannot fill with rain water or water from sprinklers. • Don’t exceed the number of adults or children the pool can safely hold. Pool Fencing Regulations Backyard pools represent a major cause of drowning among children under 5. The passage and enforcement of home pool fencing regulations, the most demanding of which require four sided isolation fencing and mandate regular inspections, has greatly reduced the rate of drowning in home pools. For more information on pool safety visit royallifesaving. com.au/programs/home-pool-safety.
Learn more about Pool Safety
Watch a video about Pool Safety
Download the Home Pool Safety Checklist
Drowning happens quickly and silently! Always keep watch over your children at home. www.childsafetyhub.com.au
SAFETY AT HOME
BASIC FIRST AID ALLERGIC REACTIONS
Signs & Symptoms • Swelling and redness of the skin. • Itchy, raised rash (live hives). • Swelling of the throat. • Wheezing and/or coughing. • Rapid, irregular pulse. • Tightness in the chest. • Headache. • Vomiting and/or abdominal pain. • Dizziness or unconsciousness. MANAGEMENT 1. Follow DRSABCD : • Check for Danger • Check for Response • Send for help • Clear the Airway • Check for Breathing • Start CPR chest compression 2. If the patient is carrying an adrenaline autoinjector, it should be used at once. Let them administer the adrenaline autoinjector themselves, or ask them if they require assistance to do so. 3. Call 000 for an ambulance. 4. Keep patient in lying or sitting position. Observe and record pulse and breathing.
SPRAINS & STRAINS It can be difficult to tell whether the injury is a fracture, dislocation, sprain or strain. If in doubt, always treat as a fracture. Signs & symptoms Sprain • intense pain • restricted mobility • rapid development of swelling and bruising. Strain • sharp, sudden pain in region of the injury • loss of power • muscle tenderness. WHAT TO DO 1. Follow DRSABCD. 2. Follow the RICE management plan: • REST the patient and the injured part. • Apply ICEPACK (cold compress) wrapped in a wet cloth to the injury for 15 minutes every 2 hours for 24 hours, then for 15 minutes every 4 hours for 24 hours. • Apply COMPRESSION elastic bandage firmly to extend well beyond the injury. • ELEVATE the injured part. 3. Seek medical attention if no improvement.
DRSABCD ACTION PLAN
In an emergency call triple zero (000) and ask for an ambulance
Ensure the are is safe for yourself, others and the patient
Check for response – ask name – squeeze shoulders No response Response Make comfortable Check for injuries Monitor response
SEND for help
Call triple zero (000) for an ambulance or ask another person to make the call
Open mouth – if foreign material present Place in recovery position Clear airway with fingers Open airway by tilting head with chin lift
Check for breathing – look, listen, feel Not normal breathing Normal breathing Start CPR Place in recovery position Monitor breathing
Start CPR – 30 chest compressions: 2 breaths Continue CPR until help arrives or patient recovers
DEFIBRILLATION Apply defibrillator if available and follow voice prompts
SAFETY AT HOME
BURNS & SCALDS
For severe external bleeding: • wear gloves, if possible, to prevent infection • do not apply a tourniquet • if an object is embedded in or protruding from a wound apply pressure either side of the wound and place pads around it before bandaging • give nothing by mouth.
Any child who has received any kind of burn should be taken immediately to a doctor. Severe burns can lead to shock and major infection if not treated correctly. Burns (scalds) can be caused by hot liquid, food, vapour or steam. They are among the most serious, painful and long-term injuries. Hot drinks account for about 42 per cent of all child scald injuries, hot foods and oils about 13 per cent and hot water 45 per cent.
WHAT TO DO Unconscious casualty 1. Follow DRSABCD. Conscious casualty 1. Follow DRSABCD. 2. Lie the casualty down and remove or cut their clothing to expose the wound. 3. Apply direct pressure over the wound using a pad or your hands (use gloves if available). Instruct the casualty to do this if possible. 4. Squeeze the wound edges together if possible. 5. Raise and support the injured part above the level of the heart. Handle gently if you suspect a fracture. 6. Apply a pad over the wound if not already in place and secure by bandaging over the padded wound. 7. If bleeding is still not controlled, leave initial pad in place and apply a second pad and secure with a bandage. 8. Check circulation below wound. 9. Ensure an ambulance has been called.
FIRST AID FOR BURNS AND SCALDS 1. Ensure it is safe to approach the patient. 2. Extinguish burning clothing – smother it with a blanket, jacket or use water. In the case of a scald, quickly remove wet clothing from the affected area. 3. Hold the burnt area under cold running water until the skin returns to normal temperature – do this for at least 20 minutes. 4. Remove jewellery and clothing from burnt area – leave it if stuck. 5. Cover the injury with a non-adherent burns dressing – if you don’t have one, use aluminium foil, plastic wrap or a wet clean dressing. 6. Seek medical aid urgently. When to seek medical advice: In the case of a child being burned, you should always consult a doctor immediately. Extensive burns are dangerous and may be fatal. For adults, you should seek medical aid if: • The burn is deep, even if the patient feels no pain. • A superficial burn is larger than a 20-cent piece. • The burn involves the airway, face, hands or genitals. • You are unsure of the severity of the burn.
Learn more first aid facts from St John Ambulance
Beware the hot tap 80 per cent of all hot tap water scalds occur in the bathroom. More than a third of these accidents are caused by hot water in the bathtub, with a further third happening when the hot tap is running. In most homes, the hot water is set on about 70ºC, a temperature which poses an extreme threat to youngsters. At 70ºC it takes less than half-a-second to cause a full skin thickness scald in tender skin. At 60ºC it takes 1 second. At 55ºC it takes 30 seconds. And at 50ºC it takes five minutes before the child is scalded.The ideal maximum, safe temperature for hot tap water is 50ºC. The maximum bathing temperature for young children is 38ºC. The first thing to do in an emergency • Get the person out of the water and flood the affected skin with cool water. • Give first aid for burns and scalds (see below). Burns may also be caused by contact with flame, hot objects. or chemicals, by electrocution, radiated heat, frozen surfaces, friction or radiation. Barbecues, gas stoves and open fires are prime hazards and they should never be left unattended. If someone is burned on the face they could also have trouble breathing, although this may not happen immediately. A person who has inhaled smoke or fumes should receive medical attention as soon as possibe. For more information visit www.stjohn.org.au
PREPARING FOR EMERGENCIES Resuscitation can save a life, so it’s a good idea to learn first aid. St John Ambulance, Red Cross and a number of private first aid training companies run courses which also include information on resuscitation. Workcover can provide a list of accredited companies. Make a list of emergency numbers to keep near the telephone. Below are some suggestions for numbers to include. You can find the others in your local phone book. Police / Fire / Ambulance • local police • Poisons Information Centre • Council • Children’s Hospital, family doctor • Health Nurse • neighbours • relatives.
HEALTH & SAFETY
CHILDREN’S MENTAL HEALTH AND WELLBEING WHAT IS CHILDREN’S MENTAL HEALTH? Mental health is about the way a child thinks and feels about themselves and their world. It’s about how they handle their everyday lives, including making and keeping friends, keeping up with school work and getting along with family members. Like our physical health, there are times we feel well and happy, and times when we don’t feel so great. As children develop and grow they can experience some bumps along the way, which may influence their thoughts, feelings and behaviours. SHOULD I BE CONCERNED? Getting in early for mental health and wellbeing Keeping children healthy and happy involves looking after their mental health as well as their physical health. Mental health is how we think or feel about ourselves and what is going on around us, and how we cope with the ups and downs of life. Good mental health helps us to form positive relationships with others, handle challenges and be able to generally enjoy life. With good mental health, children think positively about themselves and learn and achieve better results at school. Good mental health in childhood lays the foundations for positive mental health and wellbeing, now and into the future. Mental health difficulties in children Mental health difﬁculties affects children’s behaviour, feelings, ability to learn, social relationships, as well as their physical health and wellbeing. About half of all serious mental health problems in adulthood begin before the age of 14 years. In Australia it is estimated that approximately 28
one in seven children experience mental health difﬁculties. There are many ways that parents, carers and school staff can support children who are experiencing mental health difﬁculties. Some of these may be parents, carers and school staff working in partnership to come up with ways of supporting the child, attending information sessions on particular childhood mental health difﬁculties or getting a referral to a mental health professional. Although there are many effective supports for children experiencing mental health difﬁculties, many children do not receive the help they need. This can happen because families are unsure of whether their child has a difﬁculty, or they do not know where to go or what to do to get mental health support. Schools can be an ideal place for families to access information about supporting the mental health and wellbeing of their children. Sometimes parents and carers may feel concerned about raising mental health concerns due to misunderstandings and negativity that they feel may exist about mental health difﬁculties. The positive way in which families and schools support each other in relation to mental health and wellbeing will help parents and carers to seek support and assistance in a timely way. RESPONDING TO CHILDREN WHO MAY BE EXPERIENCING MENTAL HEALTH DIFFICULTIES Learning about children through observations Parents, carers and early childhood staff can support children’s mental health by being aware of possible signs of emotional and behavioural difficulties. Some of the difficulties which might be cause for concern can fall under the following five areas related to mental health. These are the key things to observe when you are concerned about a child’s mental health: Behaviours Emotions Thoughts Learning Social relationships Many children you may be concerned about will have difficulties in more than one area as they all link and influence one another. For example, a child who is showing signs of difficulties in their behaviour may also have difficulties in managing their emotions and forming relationships. It is common for children to show difficulties in these areas during early childhood as they are developing new skills. Many behaviours that would be of concern in an older child are natural for infants and very young children. If early childhood service staff have a concern about a child, they may choose to observe them
HEALTH AND SAFETY
in a range of situations to get as much information as possible. It is important that some observation, discussion and reflection takes place before deciding whether there is a significant concern requiring further investigation. Parents and carers are usually the first to recognise that their children are experiencing difficulties with behaviour, emotions or thoughts. Sometimes though, these difficulties may be more noticeable at a child’s early childhood service where staff regularly observe the behaviours of a range of children every day. Observations are an excellent way of identifying children’s strengths and needs. Through observations parents, carers and staff can see what children are coping with, enjoying, finding easy, and where children might need more support. When early childhood staff observe children they are concerned about, it is important they focus on particular behaviours and get as much detail about these behaviours as possible. By observing children you can start to learn what is part of everyday child development and what could be a mental health difficulty. Taking time to observe children doing everyday things can help us understand the meaning behind their behaviour. Getting help for your child If you are concerned that your child has excessive worries, fears, or feels ‘bad’ about him or herself and you are not sure how to go about getting help, try the following steps: Find out more Talk to teachers or others who have regular contact with your child and find out if they have concerns about your child. Talk to your child’s school about seeing the school psychologist or counsellor The psychologist or counsellor at your child’s school can listen to your concerns and discuss options for helping your child at home and at school. See your general practitioner Your doctor can explore any physical health concerns and help you decide about the need for further mental health assessment and professional support by referring you to a children’s mental health specialist if required.
REFERENCES Australian Bureau of Statistics (2007) National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing: Summary of Results. ABS, Canberra.
WHAT KINDS OF MENTAL HEALTH DIFFICULTIES DO CHILDREN EXPERIENCE? Children’s mental health difficulties are generally classified as being one of two types: ‘internalising’ and ‘externalising’. Children with internalising difficulties show behaviours that are inhibited and overcontrolled. They may have a nervous or anxious temperament and be worried, fearful and/or withdrawn. Children with externalising difficulties show behaviours that are under-controlled. They may have a more challenging temperament, shown in impulsive or reactive behaviour. Sometimes this pattern can lead to diffi culties with attention, aggression or oppositional behaviour. Externalising behaviours cause difficulties for others as well as for the children themselves.
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It is not uncommon for children to show behaviours associated with both internalising and externalising patterns of behaviour. The typical features associated with each pattern are summarised below. Features associated with children’s ‘internalising’ difficulties include: • nervous/anxious temperament • excessive worrying • pessimistic thinking • withdrawn behaviour • peer relationship difficulties (eg can be isolated). Features associated with children’s ‘externalising’difficulties include: • challenging temperament • reduced problem-solving skills • attention difficulties, hyperactivity • oppositional behaviour (eg doesn’t like to be told what to do; won’t follow rules) • aggressive behaviour. Children with ADHD often show severe externalising difficulties. Children with other serious behaviour problems also show externalising patterns of behaviour, such as persistent aggression. Children with severe internalising diffi culties may be diagnosed with an anxiety disorder or with depression.
HEALTH AND SAFETY
Good hygiene is in your hands. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds to prevent passing on germs. Dry your hands.
Together we can help stop the spread and stay healthy. For more information about Coronavirus (COVID-19) visit health.gov.au
TALKING TO CHILDREN ABOUT CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) Your child has the right to feel welcome and safe at school. We’re working hard to make sure our school communities are nurturing and supportive places where all students can learn and develop into caring, resilient and confident adults. 1. MAKE TIME TO TALK Find the right time to talk with your child. This might be when your child gets home from school, at bedtime or in the car. When your child is ready to talk, give your child your full attention. 2. FIND OUT WHAT YOUR CHILD KNOWS It’s a good idea to start by asking your child what she knows about the virus and whether she has any questions. For example, ‘On the news today, they 30
were talking about coronavirus. Were people at school talking about that? What were they saying?’ 3. EXPLAIN CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) IN A WAY YOUR CHILD CAN UNDERSTAND • Use a calm, reassuring tone and stick to the facts. • For younger children, keep it simple and brief. For example, ‘That’s right, some people are getting sick with a germ. It makes them cough and sneeze. The sick people are being looked after well by doctors and hospitals’. • For older children, offer more detail. For example, ‘I heard you talking with your friends about how you catch coronavirus. The virus spreads through things like sneezing, coughing and touching infected things. That’s why good hygiene and hand-washing are really important. They help to protect everyone.’
HEALTH AND SAFETY
4. TUNE INTO YOUR CHILD’S FEELINGS Some children might not be worried about coronavirus (COVID-19). But some might be frightened, upset or worried. They might be worried about the virus itself or about how it might affect their lives. Ask your child how they’re feeling and listen to what they say. You can also ask them what they need to feel better. It might reassure your child if you share your own feelings and let them know what you’re doing to cope. For example: • ‘I can see that you’re worried about grandpa getting really sick. I love how caring you are. If anyone we know gets sick, the hospital will take good care of them. Let’s have a big hug to help us feel better.’ • ‘It can be scary not knowing what’s going to happen with the virus. Scientists all over the world are working hard to find a vaccine and treatment. In Australia, we have good hospitals, doctors and nurses who can look after us.’ • ‘It’s OK to be worried about catching coronavirus. I sometimes worry too. Some people are only getting minor symptoms like what you get when you have a cold. If I need some good information, I look at the health department website.’ • ‘It’s disappointing we can’t go to the footy on the weekend. But the doctors say that this will help stop the spread of coronavirus, so this is how we can help.’ It’s important to monitor how much media coverage about coronavirus (COVID-19) you and your child are seeing. It’s not helpful for anyone to hear distressing news over and over again. If you have the facts you need, it’s often best to switch off or switch to something else.
SAFETY TIPS FOR PARENTS AND GUARDIANS
hour Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 for first aid and monitoring advice. Have the container of the ingested product with you.
ADVICE FOR PARENTS DAY CARE AND PRESCHOOL AGED CHILDREN (0-4 YEARS) • If your child is sick, keep them at home. • If your child has symptoms like a runny nose, fever, cough or sore throat, call your GP. • In an emergency, please call Triple Zero (000) or go to your closest emergency department. • See the raisingchildren.net.au COVID-19 family guide. PRIMARY SCHOOL CHILDREN (5-11 YEARS) • If your child is sick, keep them at home. • For primary school aged children with symptoms of COVID-19, call your GP and ask about getting your child tested. • If you visit a public testing clinic, check that your local clinic tests children 11 years and under. • See the raisingchildren.net.au COVID-19 family guide.
Watch a video on how the virus spreads
Watch a video on living the new normal
SECONDARY SCHOOL CHILDREN (12-17 YEARS) • If your teenager is sick, keep them at home and get them tested for COVID-19. • If you visit a public testing clinic, check that your local clinic tests children 17 years and under. For more information visit: www.headtohealth.gov.au/covid-19-support/covid-19
Encourage good hygiene including handwashing with soap and water, coughing/sneezing into a flexed elbow and avoid sharing food and drinks.
SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19 INCLUDE:
HAND SANITISER SAFETY AND CHILDREN Alcohol-based hand sanitiser is dangerous if ingested, particularly for children.
• fever (37.5°C or higher) • cough • sore/scratchy throat • shortness of breath • loss of smell or • loss of taste.
Safety tips for parents • store hand sanitiser products safely and out of reach of children. • any use by young children should be under the supervision of an adult. • be aware of imported products which may not be clearly labelled and may contain more toxic alcohols such as methanol that make the product more dangerous. • washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is a safe and effective option. • if you suspect your child has ingested hand sanitiser, regardless of the quantity, call the 24
Watch a video on washing your hands
Other reported symptoms include: • fatigue • runny nose • muscle pain • joint pain • headache • diarrhoea • nausea/vomiting • loss of appetite. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia with severe acute respiratory distress.
HEALTH AND SAFETY
HEALTHY EATING FOR CHILDREN TEACH YOUR CHILD HEALTHY HABITS FOR A HEALTHY LIFE Guideline 1 To achieve and maintain a healthy weight, be physically active and choose amounts of nutritious food and drinks to meet your energy needs. • Children and adolescents should eat sufficient nutritious foods to grow and develop normally. They should be physically active every day and their growth should be checked regularly. Guideline 2 Enjoy a wide variety of nutritious foods from these five food groups every day: • Plenty of vegetables of different types and colours, and legumes/beans • Fruit • Grain (cereal) foods, mostly wholegrain and/or high cereal fibre varieties, such as breads, cereals, rice, pasta, noodles, polenta, couscous, oats, quinoa and barley • Lean meats and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds, and
legumes/beans • Milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or their alternatives, mostly reduced fat (reduced fat milks are not suitable for children under the age of 2 years) • And drink plenty of water. Guideline 3 Limit intake of foods containing saturated fat, added salt, added sugars and alcohol. a. Limit intake of foods high in saturated fat such as many biscuits, cakes, pastries, pies, processed meats, commercial burgers, pizza, fried foods, potato chips, crisps and other savoury snacks. • Replace high fat foods which contain predominately saturated fats such as butter, cream, cooking margarine, coconut palm oil with foods which contain predominately polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats such as oils, spreads, nut butters/pastes
and avocado. • Low fat diets are not suitable for children under the age of 2 years. b. Limit intake of foods and drinks containing added salt. • Read labels to choose lower sodium options among similar foods. • Do not add salt to foods in cooking or at the table. c. Limit intake of foods and drinks containing added sugars such as confectionary, sugar-sweetened soft drinks and cordials, fruit drinks, vitamin waters, energy sports drinks. Guideline 4 Encourage, support and promote breastfeeding. Guideline 5 Care for your food; prepare and store it safely.
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HEALTH AND SAFETY
DENTAL HEALTH Tooth decay The main cause of tooth decay is an acid attack on the surfaces of the teeth. This acid is produced by bacteria which cling to the surface of the teeth in a film called dental plaque. Sweet, sticky, sugary foods encourage the plaque to make acid which causes tooth decay and bleeding gums. Cleaning teeth Children need to learn how to clean their teeth. Start to clean your baby’s teeth as soon as they appear. Use a small, soft toothbrush and water. When the child is 18 months of age, introduce a small amount of junior fluoride toothpaste onto the brush. Just put a smear of toothpaste on the brush. It is best that your child cleans their teeth the twice a day, in the morning and before bed. Family strength toothpaste can be introduced after 6 years of age. From around 3 years of age until about 8 years of age, children can do some of the tooth brushing themselves, adults will need to help with brushing at least once a day. If the bacteria have been on the teeth for a long time, the gums may bleed (gingivitis) when brushed. This tells you that the gums are unhealthy. To get them healthy again the gums need to be cleaned along with your teeth, even if they bleed when brushed, the bleeding will stop after a while. Tips to prevent dental disease (dental decay and gingivitis) Here are some tips to prevent dental decay and gingivitis for children: • Put only breast milk, formula or water in your baby’s bottle. • Always hold your baby when feeding and remove the bottle when they have had enough to drink. • Putting your baby to bed with a bottle can cause tooth decay • Honey, glycerine, condensed milk or other sticky foods or liquids on your baby’s dummy can cause tooth decay • Drink fluoridated tap water throughout the day. If you are not sure if your local water is fluoridated, check with your local council • Avoid eating sugary sticky foods, fizzy drinks, sweet drinks and juices especially between meals. • Give your child foods which make them chew • Brush twice a day - after breakfast and before bed (use a small toothbrush and a small amount of fluoridated toothpaste) • If there’s no toothbrush, rinse with water • Use dental floss daily from about 3-4 years of age • Visit your dentist regularly DENTAL EMERGENCIES Toothache If your child has a toothache or a hole in a tooth, take your child to the dentist immediately. Tooth decay can
easily lead to an infection which is very painful for your child. Bleeding If your child’s gums bleed during tooth-brushing take your child to the dentist as soon as possible. This bleeding can be caused by a build-up of plaque at the gum line, or it may be a symptom of a medical condition. Your dentist can check this and advise you. Injury If your child falls and hurts a tooth take them to the dentist quickly. If the teeth are loose, especially the permanent (adult) teeth, they need to be replaced in the socket and splinted as soon as possible, preferably Brushing Childrens Teeth: within the hour. The sooner the tooth is back in place In Pictures the better its chance of survival in the long term. Do not attempt to replace a baby tooth. If a permanent tooth is knocked out: 1. If the permanent tooth is knocked out: • Hold the tooth by the crown, and if it’s clean, replant tooth immediately and hold it in place by biting gently on a handkerchief or clean cloth. If the tooth is dirty, rinse in milk or saline first, then replant the tooth (use water as a last resort, 10 seconds only) • Do not scrub or touch the root of tooth • Make sure that the tooth is not back to front-facial surface towards the front. You can check this against the next tooth or someone else’s front tooth. • If you can’t replant the tooth, store it in a cup of milk, saline or saliva. Do not store in water. 2. Seek urgent dental treatment, go straight to a dental clinic or emergency department of a hospital. Time is a critical factor in saving the tooth. Teeth development Most children have 20 baby teeth. Typically, baby teeth can start to appear between 6 - 10 months of age and continue coming through until a child is 3 years of age. The bottom front teeth are usually the first to appear. When teething begins, you may notice that your child drools more and wants to chew on things. For some babies, teething is painless: others may experience brief periods of irritability. Giving your baby something to chew on like a clean chilled teething ring or clean cold wash cloth, or rubbing their gums with a clean finger can help relieve symptoms. Adult teeth start developing inside babies’ jawbones after birth. After a baby tooth falls out, an adult (permanent) tooth takes its place. Children usually start losing their baby teeth from around six years of age. The appearance of adult teeth usually occurs between 6-12 years of age, with the exception of wisdom teeth that might start coming through around 17 years of age. Adult teeth don’t get replaced, so you have to look after them. It’s a good idea to have regular dental visits to check on your child’s tooth development. www.childsafetyhub.com.au
HEALTH AND SAFETY Learn more about Food Allergies
FOOD ALLERGY OR INTOLERANCE? Watch a video on Signs and Symptoms of an Allergic Reaction
Many people think they are allergic to a food when in fact they are intolerant. Unlike food allergies, intolerances do not involve the body’s immune system. Slower in onset and not life threatening, food intolerance symptoms include headaches, bloating, wind, nausea, mouth ulcers or hives.
HOW TO GIVE AN EPIPEN IN AN EMERGENCY
Watch video on How to www.allergy.org.au give an Epipen
REMEMBER ALWAYS follow instructions onHow the ASCIA Action to give Plan for Anaphylaxis for the individual concerned ASCIA EpiPenor® the adrenaline First Aid Plan for Anaphylaxis which are in brief: (epinephrine)
Download more information about living with allergies
Symptoms that occur several hours after a food is eaten are more often as a result of an intolerance or enzyme deficiency rather than a food allergy. A food allergy is not: • The inability to digest a food • An aversion to a food (disliking a food) • Food poisoning • A reaction to a food additive What is an allergy? Allergy is an immune response to a normally harmless substance. People can be allergic to many F I Rsuch S T asApollens, I D Pmoulds, L A N dust F O Rmites, animal things dander or saliva, insect stings or bites, medication, food and latex. Allergic disease also includes conditions such as eczema, hay fever, allergic ® adrenaline (epinephrine) autoinjectors For use with EpiPenasthma. conjunctivitis and allergic
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SIGNS OF MILD TO MODERATE ALLERGIC REACTION
How common is allergy? • Swelling of lips, face, eyes • Tingling mouth Allergic diseases are common and increasing • Hives or welts • Abdominal pain, vomiting (these are for reasons which currently remain unknown. In signs of anaphylaxis for insect allergy) autoinjectors F walk I R S T A I D PAustralia L A N 20% F O Rof adults have hay fever, 10% of 1. Lay person flat - do NOT allow them to stand or ACTION FOR TOhave MODERATE ALLERGIC infants aged 12 MILD months a confirmed food REACTION • If unconscious, place in recovery position allergy, 20% of infants have eczema and up to 3% of • For insect allergy - flick out sting if visible • If breathing is difficult allow them to sit www.allergy.org.au the• population a serious allergic to off For tick allergyhas seekhad medical help or freeze tick reaction and let it drop 2. Give EpiPen® or EpiPen® Jr adrenaline autoinjector •® Stay with person and call for help insect stings (mainly adults). For use with EpiPen adrenaline (epinephrine) autoinjectors 3. Phone ambulance - triple zero (000) • Locate adrenaline autoinjector you experience depend The signs and symptoms How to contact give SIGNS OF MILD TO MODERATE ALLERGIC REACTION 4. Phone family/emergency •the Phone family/emergency contact on type of allergy you have. Allergies can be adrenaline 5. Further adrenalineEpiPen doses ®may be given if no response after • Swelling of lips, face, eyes • Tingling mouth mild, moderate or severe. Anaphylaxis requires an ® and Mildemergency to moderate allergic (such as hives (epinephrine) Form fist • around EpiPen (thesereactions are Hives or welts • Abdominal pain, vomiting 5 minutes immediate response. PULL OFF BLUE SAFETY RELEASE or swelling) mayfornot always signs of anaphylaxis insect allergy) occur before anaphylaxis 6. Transfer person toautoinjectors hospital for at least 4 hours of observation FIRST AID PLAN FOR What is Anaphylaxis? ACTION FOR MILD TO MODERATE WATCH FORALLERGIC ANY ONE REACTION OF THE FOLLOWING SIGNS OF Anaphylaxis is a sudden, severe allergic reaction If in doubt give adrenaline autoinjector ANAPHYLAXIS (SEVERE ALLERGIC REACTION) • For insect allergy flick out sting if visible www.allergy.org.au thathelp often involves various areas of the body Commence CPR at any time if person is unresponsive andseek medical • For tick allergy or freeze tick and let it drop off • Difficult/noisy Foods, breathinginsects,•medications Difficulty talking and/or with person and callsimultaneously. for help not breathing normally For use with EpiPen•®Stay adrenaline (epinephrine) autoinjectors • Swellingprescriptions, of tongue voice (including over thehoarse counter or • Locate adrenaline autoinjector • Swelling/tightness in and throatlatex• are Persistent dizziness or collapse How to give SIGNS OF MILD TO MODERATE ALLERGIC REACTION alternative therapies), the most • Phone family/emergency contact EpiPen® is prescribed for children over 20kg and adults. • Wheeze or persistent cough • Pale and floppy (young children) ® adrenaline EpiPen common causes of anaphylactic reactions. • Swelling of 7.5-20kg lips, face, eyes • Tingling mouth EpiPen Jr® is prescribed for children ® and Foods that most often (epinephrine) Hold leg still and MildORANGE to moderate allergic (such ascause hives an allergic reaction Form fist • around EpiPen (thesereactions are Hives or welts • PLACE Abdominal pain, vomiting ACTION FOR ANAPHYLAXIS END against outer mid-thigh PULL OFF BLUE SAFETY RELEASE orsigns swelling) mayfornot before anaphylaxis arealways peanuts, tree nuts, milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, of anaphylaxis insect allergy) occur autoinjectors (with or without clothing) 1 Lay person flat -and do NOT allow them to stand or walk sesame, soy, wheat lupin.
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Difficult/noisy • Difficulty talking• and/or allow them to sit If you DO NOT have •an adrenalinebreathing autoinjector: Difficult and/or noisy breathing ALWAYS give adrenaline autoinjector FIRST, if someone has • Swelling of tongue hoarse voiceautoinjector 2 Give adrenaline • SEVERE Swelling of SUDDEN the tongue AND BREATHING DIFFICULTY (including wheeze, • Swelling/tightness in throat • Persistent or collapse 3 Phone ambulancedizziness - 000 (AU) or 111 (NZ)
persistent cough or in hoarse voice), even if there are no skin ® • Lay person flat - do •NOT allow them to EpiPen stand or walk • Swelling/tightness the throat prescribed for and floppy (young Wheeze or persistent cough • Pale children) 4 isPhone family/emergency contact symptoms. THEN SEEK MEDICAL HELP. children over 20kg and adults. • If unconscious, place in recovery position 5® Further adrenaline doses • Wheeze or persistent cough may be given if no response after EpiPen Jr is prescribed for Hold leg still and PLACE ORANGE PUSH DOWN HARD until FOR a click isANAPHYLAXIS ACTION •• If adrenaline is accidentally (e.g. into a thumb)voice phone your local poisons information centre. 5 minutes If breathing is difficult allow Difficult talkinginjected and/or hoarse END against• outer mid-thigh heard or felt and hold inthem place forto sit.children 7.5-20kg. • Continue toat follow this plan for the of person with the allergic reaction. (with or without clothing) 3 seconds 6 (000) Transfer personto tostand hospital for least 4 hours observation • CALL AN AMBULANCE: DIAL TRIPLE ZERO • Persistent dizziness or collapse 1 Lay person flat do NOT allow them or walk © ASCIA 2020 This document has been developed for use as a poster, or to be stored with general use adrenaline autoinjectors. REMOVE EpiPen® - If unconscious, place If in doubt give adrenaline • Paleautoinjector and floppy (in young children)
in recovery position Commence CPR at any time if person is unresponsive and not breathing normally - If breathing is difficult See www.allergyfacts.org.au and www.allergy.org.au allow them to sit ALWAYS give adrenaline autoinjector FIRST, if someone has 2 Give adrenaline autoinjector SEVERE AND SUDDEN BREATHING DIFFICULTY (including wheeze, 3 Phone ambulance - 000 (AU) or 111 (NZ) persistent cough or hoarse voice), even if there are no skin ® is prescribed for EpiPen4 Phone family/emergency contact www.childsafetyhub.com.au 34 symptoms. THEN SEEK MEDICAL HELP. children over 20kg and adults. 5 Further adrenaline doses may be given if no response after EpiPen®Jr is prescribed for PUSH DOWN HARD until a click is 5 minutes • If adrenaline is accidentally injected (e.g. into a thumb) phone your local poisons information centre. children 7.5-20kg. heard or felt and hold in place for
Marrickville Public School
HEALTHY KIDS With good food habits and daily physical activity you will be well on your way to a healthy life. Easy to say, but sometimes not so easy to do! Our busy lifestyles can be hard on our family’s health. Rushing to and from school and work can make it hard to find time to be physically active. We can also slip into the habit of choosing unhealthy snacks and take-away foods or spending our free time watching TV or in front of the computer. What can I do? There are five simple ways for your family to lead a healthy lifestyle and get back on track: 1. Get active each day • Regular physical activity is important for the healthy growth, development and well-being of children and young people. • They should get at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day, including vigorous activities that make them ‘huff and puff’. • Include activities that strengthen muscles and bones on at least 3 days of the week. • Parents should be good role models and have a positive attitude to being active. 2. Choose water as a drink • Water is the best way to quench your thirst – and it doesn’t come with the added sugar found in fruit juices, soft drinks and other sweetened drinks. • Reduced fat milk for children over two is a nutritious drink and a great source of calcium. • Give kids whole fruit to eat, rather than offering fruit juices that have a lot of sugar.
3. Eat more fruit and vegetables • Eating fruit and vegetables every day helps children grow and develop, boosts their vitality and can reduce the risk of many chronic diseases. • Aim to eat two serves of fruit and five serves of vegetables every day. • Have fresh fruit available as a convenient snack and try to include fruit and vegies in every meal. 4. Switch off the screen and get active • Sedentary or ‘still’ time spent watching TV, surfing online or playing computer games is linked to kids becoming overweight or obese. • Children and young people should spend no more than two hours a day on ‘small screen’ entertainment. Break up long periods of use as often as possible. • Plan a range of active indoor and outdoor games or activities for your children, as alternatives to watching TV or playing on the computer. 5. Eat fewer snacks and select healthier alternatives • Healthy snacks help children and young people meet their daily nutritional needs. • Snacks based on fruit and vegetables, reduced fat dairy products and whole grains are the healthiest choices. • Avoid snacks that are high in sugar or saturated fats – such as chips, cakes and chocolate – which can cause children to put on excess weight.
At school students learn about the types of foods and drinks needed to stay healthy, to help brains work and to help them feel more alert – just what is needed to get through the school day. So it makes sense that the school canteen is full of healthy food and drink options. Good nutrition is vital to all children and young people, as it helps them to grow and learn. The Healthy School Canteen Strategy is about improving access to healthy food and drink choices and it’s about providing students with the skills and opportunity to learn about healthy food and drink choices and making the healthy choice the right choice. The revised Healthy School Canteen Strategy has the new Food and Drink criteria which categorises food and drink as either Everyday or Occasional. This replaces the traffic light system of Green, Amber and Red foods which made the Fresh Tastes @ School strategy. The Food and Drink criteria follow the Australian Dietary Guidelines that recommend that we eat from the five food groups, vegetables, wholegrain, dairy, fish and meat everyday, and only occasionally eat small amounts of foods containing lots of fat, salt and sugar. Look for the Everyday food and drinks in your canteen – they are easy to spot as they will be at the front of the counter and there will be plenty of fabulous choices. Everyday foods include foods from each of the five food groups. Choose things like sandwiches and wraps filled with salads/cheese/eggs, toasties with apple and cinnamon, rice paper rolls, jacket potatoes, lasagna, burritos with beans and salsa, pizza muffins, fruit and popcorn, just to name a few. The Occasional foods are things like meat pies, sausage rolls, hot chips, crisps, sweet biscuits, processed meats such as salami, cakes, muesli , confectionery, ice cream, desserts and soft drinks. Load up on the everyday and have less occasional food and drinks, because you know it will make you feel better throughout the day. For more information visit healthyschoolcanteens.nsw.gov.au
THE NSW HEALTHY SCHOOL CANTEEN STRATEGY
HEALTH AND SAFETY • Cook or grate hard fruit and Cook or grate hard fruit and • vegetables to soften them. vegetables to soften them. • Remove all bones from Remove all bones from • fish or meat. fish or meat.
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Serves per day
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The Australian Dietary Guidelines provide up-to-date advice about the amount and kinds of foods that we need to eat for health and wellbeing. They are based on scientific evidence and research. SERVE SIZES
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The Australian Dietary Guidelines provide up-to-date advice about the amount and kinds of foods and drinks
Childhood is is aa time time of of learning. learning. Children who who Childhood Children that we need regularly, for health and well-being. grow up in families that enjoy a variety of grow up in families that enjoy aBy providing your child with the recommended amounts variety of from the Five Food Groups and limiting the foods that nutritious foods foods from from the the Five Five Food Food Groups nutritious Groups are high in saturated fat, added sugars and added salt, are more more likely likely to to make make their their own own healthy they will get enough of the nutrients essential for good are healthy health, growth and development. They may have a choices as as they they get get older. older. choices reduced risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, Vegetables and legumes/beans
It’s helpful to get to know the recommended serving sizes and serves per day so that your child eats and drinks the right amount of the nutritious foods they need for health – as shown in the tables above. We’ve given you the serve size in grams too, so you can weigh foods to get an idea of what a serve looks like.
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may also feel better, look better, enjoy life more and You can help by teaching your whole family to: You can help by teaching your whole family to: live longer!
• Choose ‘everyday foods’ for home and school Choose ‘everyday foods’ for home and school The amount of food your child will need from the • Five Food Groups depends on their age, gender, from the Five Food Groups. The AustralianDietary DietaryGuidelines provide Guidelines provide from the Five Food Groups. The Australian height, weight and physical activity levels. For example, a 3-year-old boy requires 1 serve of fruit a day, but up-to-date advice about the amount and HOW MANY SERVES A DAY? up-to-date advice about the amount and www.childsafetyhub.com.au an 11-year-old boy needs 2 serves of fruit a day. • Save discretionary choices for special Save discretionary choices for special • kinds of foods that we need to eat for health kinds of foods that we need to eat for health A 9-year-old girl needs 4 serves of grain (cereal) Children rarely eat exactly the same way each day and it is occasions. occasions. foods a day, and a 14-year-old girl needs 7and wellbeing. serves a common to have a little more on some days than others. and wellbeing. Red kidney beans
The ‘serve size’ is a set amount that doesn’t change. It is used along with the ‘serves per day’, to work out the total amount of food required from each of the Five Food Groups. ‘Portion size’ is the amount your child actually eats and this will depend on what their energy needs are. Some children’s portion sizes are smaller than the ‘serve size’ and some are larger. Children may eat smaller amounts more often if they choose.
Lean meats and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds and legumes/beans
ghurt, cheese and/or
HEALTH AND SAFETY
HEALTH AND SAFETY
• • • •
Washing hands regularly Cough or sneeze into a tissue or elbow Avoid crowded spaces where possible Staying home if really unwell
Exercise is also a common trigger among children, otherwise known as exercised-induced asthma. Exercise should not be avoided as this trigger can be easily managed and moderate exercise can be beneficial for a child’s asthma. Exercised induced asthma can be managed by: • Two puffs of reliever medication 15 minutes before exercise • Preventer medication • Regular doctor reviews • Keep exercise moderate
Learn more about asthma emergency and first aid
What is asthma? Asthma is a long-term lung condition of the airways. Children with asthma have sensitive lungs which become inflamed when exposed to triggers, this can cause the onset of a ‘flare up ’also known as an asthma attack. The muscles around the airway squeeze tight, swell and become narrow during a flare up, these issues make breathing difficult. An asthma flare up can have a rapid (within minutes) or slow onset (hours, days or weeks).
Learn more about asthma in young children
For children aged 5 to 14 years, asthma is a leading cause of total disease burden, 14% accounts for boys and 12% for girls . In 2017-2018 almost half (44%) of the hospitalisations for asthma in Australia were for children aged 0-14 years . Asthma cannot be cured, however for most children it can be well controlled by following a daily management plan. What are the Triggers of asthma? A child’s asthma may be worse on some days than others due to asthma triggers. Every child has a different experience or different trigger. Some triggers that affect children include: • Colds and flu • Hay fever • Exercise • Bushfires and smoke Among children cold and flu are the most common trigger for an asthma-flare up which can be serious whether a child’s asthma is mild or well controlled. Colds and flu cannot be avoided, however, risk can be reduced by:
Asthma Flare-Up Flare-ups in children do happen and are most often caused by colds and flu, therefore it is almost impossible to avoid. An asthma flare-up is different from having asthma symptoms as they are more severe and require urgent medical attention. When a child’s symptoms aren’t improving or responding to reliever medications this is a sign that a flare-up is looming. Asthma First Aid As children are dependent on supervision and care it is vital that parents learn asthma first aid. If your child is experiencing a severe or lifethreatening asthma flare-up, call an ambulance and then start asthma first aid. If your child is experiencing a mild to moderate asthma flare-up, begin asthma first aid: 1. Sit child upright. • Be calm and do not leave them alone. 2. Give 4 separate puffs of blue/grey reliever puffer. • Shake, 1 puff, 4 breaths. • Repeat until 4 puffs have been taken. 3. Wait 4 minutes – if no improvement repeat step two. 4. If there is still no improvement dial 000 and continue giving 4 separate puffs every 4 minutes until emergency assistance arrives. If your child has asthma, speak to your child’s doctor about a written Asthma Action Plan, device technique checks and preventer medication. For more information on asthma call 1800 ASTHMA (1800 278 462) or visit www.asthma.org.au
 Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2019. Asthma. Cat. no. ACM 33. Canberra: AIHW Viewed 29 October 2019, https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/chronic-respiratory-conditions/asthma
HEALTH AND SAFETY
DIABETES What is diabetes? Diabetes is characterised by high glucose levels (commonly referred to as sugar levels) in the blood stream, caused by a lack of insulin production, ineffective insulin, or a combination of both. There are two main types of diabetes – type 1 and type 2 – their cause and management can be quite different. Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes, making up 85-90% of all diabetes cases. It mainly affects adults, but can affect young people, even children. It is caused by genetic and lifestyle factors, such as lack of physical activity, poor food choices and excess weight. In type 1 diabetes, the body’s immune system destroys the insulin-making cells (beta cells) in the pancreas. The pancreas stops making insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is essential for life, so children with type 1 diabetes need to replace insulin in the body either with several injections a day or via an insulin pump. The majority of children with diabetes have type 1. The onset usually occurs under the age of 30 (and has been known in the past as Juvenile Onset Diabetes), however it can happen at any age. The exact cause of type 1 diabetes is not known. A combination of genetic factors, together with environmental factors, are thought to trigger the autoimmune response. These environmental triggers are largely unknown but likely to be viral and/or chemical. Type 1 diabetes is not contagious or preventable, nor is it caused by an unhealthy lifestyle. This is a common misconception which has, at times, resulted in blaming and shaming students for unhealthy food choices including ‘too much sugar’ or junk food. Nationally, there are over 14,000 school-aged children living with type 1 diabetes, with 4500 of
Signs and symptoms of type 1 diabetes • Being excessively thirsty • Blurred vision • Passing more urine • Unexplained weight loss • Feeling tired and lethargic • Mood swings • Always feeling hungry • Headaches • Having cuts that heal slowly • Feeling dizzy • Itching, skin infections • Leg cramps These symptoms may occur suddenly and, if not treated properly, can pose immediate life-threatening health risks. If they occur, see a doctor straightaway. With a simple test, a doctor can find out if your child has type 1 diabetes.
these in NSW.. Recently, Diabetes NSW & ACT rolled out a new diabetes-in-schools education and training program to make it easier for teachers and staff to support children with type 1 diabetes, and give parents confidence that their children will be safe and supported at school. The program covers the safe management of diabetes and ‘normalises’ diabetes in schools so students are not stigmatised. In the school setting, a child must have access to their blood glucose monitoring kit, and hypo kit, at all times. Monitoring blood glucose is not a ‘sick bay’ activity, and must be supported in the classroom. Tending to activities of daily diabetes care in the classroom environment is less disruptive to a child’s learning, and can help other students understand and support a peer living with diabetes.
Learn more about when your child has diabetes
Watch a video about DiaBuddies Day
Diabetes NSW & ACT runs camps and Diabuddies Days for children with type 1 diabetes throughout the year. These are fantastic opportunities for children to meet others with type 1 diabetes and gain confidence in their own diabetes management. It can be an isolating experience for children living with type 1 diabetes, so these events enable children and their families to meet others facing the same challenges and triumphs. They are a chance to celebrate the children’s achievements, while facilitating education, networking and friendships. To find out about upcoming camps or DiaBuddies Days call 1300 342 238 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
HEALTH AND SAFETY
Learn more about Immunisation
Learn more about why on-time immunisation is important
Learn more about how vaccines affect immunity
Learn more about vaccine safety
About Immunisation Immunisation is a simple, safe and effective way to protect people against serious diseases. Immunisation not only protects individuals but also others in the community, including those who are too young to be vaccinated or those that can’t be vaccinated for medical reasons. Immunisation is the most siginificant public health intervention in the last 200 years, providing a safe and effective way to prevent the spread of many diseases that cause hospitalisation, serious ongoing health conditions and sometimes death. Since the introduction of vaccination for children in Australia in 1932, deaths from these preventable diseases have fallen by 99 per cent, even though the Australian population has increased by three times over that period. Before the major vaccination campaigns of the 1960s and ’70s, diseases like tetanus, diphtheria and whooping cough (pertussis) killed thousands of young children each year. Worldwide, it has been estimated that immunisation programmes prevent approximately three million deaths each year. For immunisation to provide the greatest benefit, about 95 per cent of the population need to be vaccinated to halt the spread of bacteria and viruses that cause disease - this is called ‘herd immunity’. In NSW, immunisation coverage rates for children are high, with close to 95 per cent of children fully immunised. Without herd immunity, rare diseases could become common again, causing more illness and deaths. How immunisation works Immunisation uses the body’s natural defence mechanism – the immune response – to build resistance to specific bacteria and viruses. When a person is vaccinated, their body produces an immune response in the same way their body would after exposure to a disease, but without the person suffering symptoms of the disease. When a person comes in contact with that disease in the future, their immune system will respond fast enough to prevent the person developing the disease or greatly reducing its severity. Why Vaccinate • Vaccination is the best way to protect your child from serious diseases. • By vaccinating you are protecting your child as well as others in the community, including those who are too young to be vaccinated or those that can’t be vaccinated for medical reasons.
• The more people who vaccinate their children, the greater our ability to control serious diseases in the community. Vaccinating on time With 100,000 babies born in NSW annually, it’s important that new parents make sure that their children are vaccinated on time at the recommended milestones. The NSW Immunisation Schedule has been carefully developed to provide children with the earliest possible protection against 13 vaccine preventable diseases. This is particularly important for babies in the first six months of life when they are very vulnerable as their immune system is still developing. If children are vaccinated later than the recommended milestones, then they will be unprotected and therefore be at risk of illness or death themselves and of further spreading disease in the community. Delaying vaccination when your little one is feeling off colour is a normal response. But the truth is, even if they have a runny nose or slight cold they can still receive their shot. Side effects Vaccines are safe and effective. The benefits of immunisation far outweigh any risks. However, like other medicines, a vaccine can sometimes cause side effects. These are usually mild and short-lasting and involve pain, swelling and redness at the injection site. Serious side effects are very rare. If you have any concerns about possible side effects, speak to your GP or immunisation service provider. Keeping records Parents will need to provide records of their child’s immunisations for child care, preschool and for school enrolment. An Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) Immunisation History Statement for each child will automatically be sent to parents after the childhood immunisation schedule is completed (sometime after 4 years of age). A copy can also be obtained at any time by: • using the Medicare online account through MyGov • using the Medicare Express Plus App • calling the AIR General Enquiries Line on 1800 653 809. Where to vaccinate Vaccinations are provided by: • GPs • Aboriginal Medical Services • Some local councils • Some community health centres If you are unsure about what services are available in your area, you can contact your local public health unit on 1300 066 055.
On-time vaccination is your childâ€™s best protection against serious diseases.
Download the free Save The Date To Vaccinate app
Itâ€™s in your hands health.nsw.gov.au/vaccinate
FACT â€“ Almost half of all house fires start in the kitchen.
Never leave cooking unattended. Stay in the kitchen while cooking and turn off the stove before you leave.
Donâ€™t put anything metallic in the microwave and always double-check the timer.
Avoid cooking under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
There are many dangerous substances in the kitchen. Flammable materials such as aerosols, cleaning agents and cooking oils should be stored away from heat and locked away from children.
Keep matches out of reach of children.
IF YOUR PAN CATCHES FIRE HERE’S WHAT TO DO Turn off the stove (if safe to do so) and use the lid to cover the flame.
Keep your oven, rangehood and grill clean and in good working order. A build-up of grease and fat can ignite in a fire.
Turn pot handles inwards.
Keep loose clothing, fabrics, tea towels, curtains and flammable items away from the stove.
Use a fire extinguisher or fire blanket in the first few seconds of ignition if you are confident.
Learn more about Cooking & Fire Safety
Watch a video about Cooking & Fire Safety
Download the Fire + Rescue App
Never use water to put out a fat or oil fire.
Leave the kitchen, close the door and call Triple Zero ‘000’.
Children need constant supervision to protect them from the dangers of fires, burns and scalds.
Help us, help you stay safe by following these simple smoke alarm guidelines:
SMOKE ALARMS CHOOSING YOUR SMOKE ALARM
CHOOSING YOUR SMOKE ALARM
Help us, help you stay safe by following these simple smoke alarm guidelines:
1. It’s the law to have at l east one working smoke alarm installed on every level of your home. This includes owner occupied homes, rental properties, relocatable homes, caravans an d camper-vans or any other residential building where people sleep. 2. Fire & Rescue NSW recommends the installation of photoelectric smoke alarms, ideally hard-wired and interconnected.
1. It’s the law to have at least one or more working smoke alarms installed on every level of your home. • Standard battery-operated This includes owneralarms. occupied homes, rental • Mains-powered smoke alarms. properties, relocatable homes, caravans and • Smoke alarms with ten year lithium batteries. camper-vans or any other residential building • Strobe light and vibrating pad alarms. These are wherefor people available people sleep. who are deaf or hard of hearing.
3. There are different types of smoke alarms available:
more information contact the Deaf Society 2. For Smoke alarms must have the Australian Standard of NSW on 02 8833 3600. symbol on the packaging. Fire and Rescue NSW 4. The Australian Standard symbol on the packaging recommends shows if the alarm issmoke approvedalarms and safe. be installed in every bedroom and ideally hard wired and interconnected. 5. Your local Fire & Rescue NSW station will be happy
you advice on which type is best or f you. 3.to give There are different types of suited smoke alarms available:
INSTALLING YOUR SMOKE ALARM
1. 2. 3.
• Standard battery-operated alarms. Avoid fitting smoke alarmssmoke in or near your kitchen • Mains-powered alarms. or bathroom. • Smoke alarms with ten year lithium batteries. The ideal position is on the ceiling between • Strobe lightareas. and vibrating pad alarms. These are sleeping and living available peoplerequirement, who are deaf In addition to thefor minimum Fire or hard of hearing. & Rescue NSW recommends installing smoke For more information contact the Deaf Society alarms in all bedrooms where people sleep. of NSW on 02 8833 3600.
4. Hard-wired smoke alarms need to be installed 4.by an Your local Fire & Rescue NSW station will be happy electrician.
to give you advice on which type is best suited for you. 5. Always install smoke alarms in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions. 6. If it is difficult for you to fit one yourself, contact your local Fire & Rescue NSW station for help. They’ll be happy to install your smoke alarm battery for you.
INSTALLING YOUR SMOKE ALARM MAINTAINING
YOUR SMOKE ALARM
1. Avoid fitting smoke alarms in or near your kitchen or bathroom. 2. The ideal position is on the ceiling between sleeping and living areas. 1. Test your smoke alarm batteries every month by pressing and holding the test button for
3.fiveInseconds. addition to the minimum Fire Replace batteries every 12requirement, months. & Rescue NSW recommends installing smoke 2. Vacuum dust off alarms every six months. alarms in all bedrooms where people sleep. 3. Replace smoke alarms with a new photoelectric
every ten years or earlier, if specifi ed to be installed 4.alarm Hard-wired smoke alarms need by the manufacturer. by an electrician.
For more information on smoke alarms, 5. ﬁAlways install alarms in accordance visit: re.nsw.gov.au andsmoke planning.nsw.gov.au
6. If it is difficult for you to fit one yourself, contact your local Fire & Rescue NSW station for help. They’ll be happy to install your smoke alarm battery for you.
Single Floor Plan
Smoke Alarms for Minimum Protection Smoke Alarms for Additional Protection
Multi-Level Floor Plan
Smoke Alarms for Minimum Protection Smoke Alarms for Additional Protection
MAINTAINING YOUR SMOKE ALARM Learn more about Smoke Alarms
1. Test your smoke alarm batteries every month by pressing and holding the test button for five Watch seconds. batteries every 12 months. a videoReplace on ReAlarm: Shopping
2. Vacuum dust off alarms every six months. to replace your smoke alarm
3. Replace smoke alarms with a new alarm every ten years or earlier, if specified by the manufacturer. For more information on smoke alarms, visit: fire.nsw.gov.au and planning.nsw.gov.au www.childsafetyhub.com.au
PLAN A SAFE ESCAPE BE PREPARED BY MAKING A PLAN OF ESCAP E MEET PLAC ING E
FACT - Having a home escape plan in conjunction with a working smoke alarm will greatly increase your chances of getting out safely. Every second counts
Draw a ï¬‚oor plan of your home, including two ways of escape from each room. Plan an escape route and ensure everyone knows how to get out.
Blocked exits are a hazard. Keep exits clear.
Keep door and window keys in or next to locks so they can be opened easily.
Decide on a meeting place outside e.g. .the letterbox. Provide alternatives and someone to assist for anyone with a disability.
EXAMPLE ESCAPE PLAN Decide on a meeting place outside e.g. the letterbox.
MEETING PLACE Plan two ways out of a room. Primary Secondary
Draw your escape plan here and share it with your family.
The backyard barbie can be a common cause of fires during summer. Here are some pointers:
LP CY SA
There should be an adult in charge of a lit barbecue at all times.
Keep barbecues clean and ensure all gas hoses and connections are correctly fitted.
After using your barbecue, remove all excess fat so it doesn’t become a fire hazard.
LPG & GAS CYLINDER SAFETY
There should be an adult in charge of a lit barbecue at all times.
with soapy water.
Ensure connections on hoses are tight with nouse leakage. Never a hose that has perished or is cracked.
or used incorrectly.
or used incorrectly.
Replace cylinders if they appear Check the expiry damageddate or rusty. before using aNever gas cylinder. check Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG)with can for leaks be extremely dangerous if flstored a naked ame.
Always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for Ensure connections maintenance. on hoses are tight with no leakage.
Check the expiry date before using a gas cylinder. Liquid Petroleum GasNever (LPG)check can for leaks with be extremely dangerous if stored a naked flame.
Always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for maintenance.
Never use portable LPG cylinders indoors 1 Liquid Petroleum Gasor (LPG) canned in confi Check the expiry spaces. be extremely dangerous if stored date before using or used incorrectly. a gas cylinder.
Always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for Ensure connections maintenance. on hoses are tight with no leakage.
Never use portable LPG cylinders indoors Replace cylinders or in confi Check thened expiry if they appear date before using damagedspaces. or rusty. a gas cylinder.
Always read and follow the 12-13 manufacturer’s instructions for maintenance.
Always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for maintenance. Never use portable LPG cylinders indoors or in confined Check spaces.the expiry date before using a gas cylinder.
LPG & GAS CYLINDER SAFETY
LPG & GAS CYLINDER SAFETY
There should be an adult in charge of a lit barbecue at all times. Never use portable LPG cylinders indoors or in confined spaces.
Never use portable LPG cylinders indoors or in confined spaces.
LPG & GAS CYLINDER SAFETY
There should be an adult in charge of a lit barbecue at all Replace times. cylinders Never use if they appear damagedportable or rusty. LPG cylinders indoors or in confined spaces.
LPG & GAS CYLINDER SAFETY
The backyard barbie can be a common cause of fires during summer. Here are some pointers:
ep barbecues clean d ensure all gas ses and connections e correctly fitted.
LPG & GAS CYLINDER SAFETY
There should be an adult in charge of a lit barbecue at all times.
ep barbecues clean d ensure all gas ses and connections e correctly fitted.
The backyard barbie can be a common cause cylinder and of fires duringCheck summer. hoses for leaks by Here are some pointers: brushing or spraying
× × ×
Always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for Ensure connections maintenance. on hoses are tight with no leakage.
Check the expiry date before using a gas cylinder. Never check for leaks with a naked flame.
Ensure connections on hoses are tight with nouse leakage. Never a hose that has perished or is cracked.
Never check for leaks with a naked flame.
12 47 7/04/2015 11:54 am
BUSH FIRE SAFETY PACKAGE The Lil Larrikkins pack has been developed to help explain to students the dangers of bush fires and give them age appropriate actions to help them and their families better prepare and become more resilient for bush fire events.
a f e t ya f e t y Fi re Sa fe B u s h f i r e S Ho me Australian Bushfire Areas Name:
re Safe ty
Fi re Sa fe Ho me
Research to find out where major bushfires have occurred in Australia over the last 10 to 20 years. Mark the locations on the map6 below. Colour code the map using the following key: Red = High number of bushfire events
Orange = Moderate number 2 of bushfire events
Yellow = Low number of bushfire events 7
Green = No bushfire events
Use an â€˜Xâ€™ to identify local risk areas. 4
1. Spr inkl er
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2. Window s, crevice
s and ven Spark-p ts roof your home with stainless steel flyw bronze or and doo rs, or insta ire screens on wind shut ters ll fire resi . Cov stant met ows mesh. Enc er all wall cavi al ties in fine Cover vent lose areas under decks and wire s in the mesh. roof spac e with fine floors. wire
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4. Clear area
Design path around your ways, drivewa ys and lawn home immedia s tely arou to keep a clear area nd your home.
Regular s, crevice ly clean s and ven gutt and bark Spark-p ts from any ers and remove roof your bec ome leavstain home with es less trapped. areas where they canand doo steel flywire scre bronze or rs, or insta ens shut ters ll fire resi on windows 6. Skyligh . Cov stant met ts mesh. Enc er all wall cavi al lose Install wire areas und ties in fine wire Cover vent er decks s in the cover on -reinforc ed glas and floo mesh. roof spac s or a ther skylights rs. e with fine glass can as plastic moplasti wire c break in can melt intense and heat. 3. Roofing
Well-secure d metal Choose tiled roof non -flam needs to roof ing is preferab mable wall as brick, resistan mud bric t sarking be well fitted with le. A k and fibre materials such weather (fibregla foil). boards, ss-based firerough timb cement. Viny cladding aluminium l er and othe can war p external roof and or catch fire. Gap r wall clad sealed. s in ding nee d to be
rricular Activ ity Sheets
1. Spr inkl er
4. Clear area
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Cross-curricular Activity Sheets
5. Gut ters
Regular ly clean gutt and bark from any ers and remove bec ome leaves trapped. areas where they can
Install wire cover on -reinforc ed glas s or skylights glass can as plastic a ther moplasti c break in can melt intense and heat.
Choose non -flam mable wall as brick, mud bric k and fibre materials such weather boards, rough timb cement. Viny cladding l er and othe can war p external roof and or catch fire. Gap r wall clad sealed. s in ding nee d to be
rricular Activ ity
The NSW RFS, together other national bush fire agencies, created the Lil Larikkins Bush Fire Safety Program to assist primary school teachers to educate students about bush fire. The package includes tools such as comprehensive notes and lesson plans to help empower primary school students to take stock of their surroundings and community and learn more about the unique Australian environment in which we live. To access the resources or for more information visit: www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/lillarikkins
NSW RURAL FIRE SERVICE VOLUNTEERS have been protecting local communities from bush and grass fires for more than 100 years. Our volunteers make a difference in their communities not just by fighting fires, but also by helping families prepare themselves and their homes for a bush fire.
The NSW RURAL FIRE SERVICE can support teachers and students by presenting skills-based sessions to students, assisting in school emergency planning and working with the wider school community to be prepared for a fire event. If you would like a member of the NSW RFS to visit your school please contact your local Fire Control Centre or visit www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/schoolsenquiry
BUSH FIRE AND YOUR FAMILY A bush fire survival plan can help you make important decisions about what to do during a fire - like when to leave, what to take and what to do with animals.
GETTING READY for a bush fire is easier than you think and there are simple things you can do to protect yourself and your family this bush fire season.
www.rfs.nsw.gov.au NSW Rural Fire Service
It’s a fact. If you and your home are well prepared, you stand a better chance of surviving a bush fire. Join with everyone else in ensuring that your home and family are protected by following the Four Simple Steps to getting ready for a bush fire.
with your family what you will do if a fire happens near you.
your home and get it ready for bush fire season.
the bush fire alert levels.
information like websites and emergency details handy.
Get the easy guide to making your
bush fire survival plan at www.myfireplan.com.au DISCUSS
GET READY FOR A BUSH FIRE FOUR SIMPLE STEPS TO MAKING YOUR BUSH FIRE SURVIVAL PLAN Getting ready for a bush fire is easier than you think. By taking 20 minutes with your family to discuss what you’ll do during a fire, you could save their lives, as well as your home.
It is important to talk to your child about your family’s plans in the event of a bush fire. The Bush Fire Cooperative Research Council has released a document to assist parents in involving their children in bush fire survival planning. For more information visit: www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/involveyourkids
4 SIMPLE STEPS Preparing for a bush fire is easier than you think. It’s your responsibility to prepare yourself, LEAVING EARLY OR PREPARING TOfour STAY? your home and your family. There are simple steps to get ready for a bush fire: One of the most important things to do before a bush fire is to decide what you’ll do if one should start. This guide can help you make that decision, and assist you with the steps in preparing yourself, your home and your family. Once you’ve had the discussion and made a decision, get your family to sign this document.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO? DECIDE TO STAY. ONLY IF YOU’RE WELL PREPARED.
LEAVE EARLY, YOUR SAFEST CHOICE.
you start, ask your household: • When will we leave? • Do we haveBefore all the equipment we need? When will we leave? • Is your home well prepared to make it as safe as possible during a fire? • Where will we go? • When there is a fire, what is our sign to start Check the Step 2 property protection checklists. What will be your sign to leave? It could be smoke in your area, as soon as you find out there’s a fire near you. • Are we putting anyone in our family at risk by staying? • How will orwe get there? defending our home? For example children, the elderly, or people with asthma. • Will we cope in an emergency situation? In a fire, it will be hot, smoky • What will we take? • Do we know what to do BEFORE, DURING and physically draining. Even trained firefighters can find it challenging. If you’rea not sure or aren’t prepared, you should leave early. • Who will call to tell that YOUR we’re leaving AFTER fire? STEP 2:we PREPARE HOME AND and GET READY and that we have arrived safely? • Do all members of our household KNOW THE TOP 5 ACTIONS TO MAKE YOUR HOME SAFER • What is our backup plan? WHAT TO DO in all situations? There are some simple things you can do around your home to prepare it for a bush fire. You need to prepare • What is our backup plan? Where willthe we last go? minute is too late. well beforehand as leaving it to Do we have all the equipment we need?
Where’s a meeting place that’s safe and away from a fire area? It might be a friend or relative’s place, or even a shopping centre.
Go through all the items on the Decide to Stay checklist and see what’s missing. Make a commitment to get all equipment by a specific date.
Here are five simple things you can do before and during the bush fire season.
How will we get there?
When there is a fire, what is our sign to start defending our home?
What road will you take? What’s your backup plan in case the road is blocked?
It could be as soon as you find out there’s a fire near you. Do not wait for an official warning.
Trim overhanging Clear and remove Prepare a sturdy Mow grass Remove material trees and shrubs. allwhat the debris hose or hoses and remove that can burn Do we know to do BEFORE, DURING and AFTER a fire?that What will wecuttings. take? This can stop the and leaves from will reach all around the around your home Study the Decide to Stay action checklist. Make a list of what you’ll take in the event of a fire. Remember to include pets, fire spreading to the gutters your home. Make Have cleared (e.g. Door mats, identification and irreplaceable itemsalike photos or documents. your home. surrounding sure you’ve got area around wood piles, mulch, If there is a fire in your area youyour will find its alert level on the NSW RFS website, on the radio andyour in the ‘Fires Near Me’ app. home. a reliable source home. leaves, paint, Burning embers of water. outdoor furniture). You need to keep track of the alert level so you know what you should do. can set your Do all members of our household KNOW WHAT TO DO home on fire. in all situations?
STEP 3: KNOW THE BUSH FIRE ALERT LEVELS
Give specific roles to each person.
Who will we call to tell that we’re leaving and that we have arrived safely? Who will we call to let them know we’re leaving and that we’ve got there safely?
is our backup plan? Join others in your neighbourhood in completing these Top 5 ActionsWhat to protect your home.
WATCH AND ACT
A fire has started. There is no immediate danger. Stay up to date in case the situation changes.
Consider unexpected events such as if one of us is home alone, if we aren’t home, if the fire moves faster than expected or if the phone lines and electricity are down.
There is a heightened level of threat. Conditions are changing and you need to start taking action to protect It’s not safe you and your family.
STEP 4: KEEP KEY INFORMATION What is our backup plan? What if things don’t go to plan? Identify a safer location nearby such as a neighbour’s home
An Emergency Warning is the highest level of Bush Fire Alert. You may be in danger
to stay with your property under some circumstances, and need to take action immediately.like: Any delay now puts your life at risk. • If the fire danger rating is Catastrophic.
• There is anRural ExtremeFire fire danger ratingstrongly and your home is not specially designed that well prepared, or a important place of last resort. Is there Neighbourhood Safer Place In aisbush fire, it’s that youa stay up to date on nearby? conditions in your area. The NSW Service advises or constructed for bush fires. saving these numbers, links and apps now. • Your property is not well maintained.
• You or the people in your home aren’t mentally and physically fit and ready. Under these circumstances, you should leave early.
Neighbourhood Safe Places are a place of last resort, such as a sports ground or local building that has been specially identified for use during a fire.
Remember that bush and grass fires can move quickly and catch you off guard. If you are caught in a fire, protect yourself from the heat.
Not all areas will have a Neighbourhood Safer Place so check www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/nsp for locations.
In an emergency call Triple Zero (000)
NSW Rural Fire Service Website: rfs.nsw.gov.au
We have discussed and agreed with the entire household we will:
For information on bush fire, call the Bush Fire Information Line [ ] Leave early 1800 NSW RFS (1800 679 737)
Danger Ratings: [ Fire ] Decide to stay rfs.nsw.gov.au/fdr
The safest option is to leave early before the fire reaches you.
‘Fires Near Me’ Free smartphone app. Signed:
Local radio, local ABC/emergency broadcaster frequency, TV, newspapers
st make PREPARE. You mu starts.
before the fire season re e Danger Rating, the mo ACT. The higher the Fir ns. dangerous the conditio ten without warning so SURVIVE. Firesatmayoyuthrwileal do to survive. you need to know wh
FOR INFORMATION ON FIRES • Check our Fires Near Me page for current incidents • Listen to local media • Check social media such as NSW RFS Facebook and NSW RFS Twitter • Bush Fire Information Line - 1800 679 737 TO REPORT A FIRE EMERGENCY • Call Triple Zero (000) • If you are deaf or have a speech or hearing impairment call 106
WHAT TO DO DURING A FIRE BEFORE THE FIRE • Put on your protective clothing • Turn on the radio to keep yourself informed • Bring pets inside and keep them in one room • Close all windows and doors • Block spaces beneath doors and windows with wet towels • Fill buckets, sinks and bath tubs with water ready to put out spot fires • Have your firefighting equipment like pumps and hoses connected to your water supply • Block downpipes and fill gutters with water • Remove items which can burn from around your home like outdoor furniture • Bring ladders inside to check roof space for embers • Patrol the outside of your home putting out any embers or spot fires • Just before the fire arrives, wet down timber decks and gardens close to the house • Move any firefighting equipment to a place where it will not get burnt
DURING THE FIRE • Go inside but stay alert • Shelter in a room on the RE opposite side of the house EMB LeaM from the approaching fire and v i n i s yo g eaER: one that has a clear exit out of rl u the house optri safesty on. • Patrol inside the house, including the roof space looking for sparks and embers • Protect yourself from the heat of the fire • If your life is at risk, call triple zero (000) ONCE THE FIRE HAS PASSED • Check your roof spaces • Go outside and put out any part of your house which is alight • Check under the house and any decks • Check on your pets and animals • Embers or sparks can start spot fires for many hours after • the fire has passed • If you can, contact your family and friends and check on your neighbours
FIRE DANGER RATING THE HIGHER THE FIRE DANGER RATING, THE MORE DANGEROUS THE CONDITIONS Know the fire danger in your area and what it means. The fire danger rating should be your first trigger for action and could save your life. When the rating is Catastrophic, leaving early is the only option for your survival. Know your triggers. Be prepared to activate your Bush Fire Survival Plan with little or no warning.
FIRE HAS A PLAN. YOUR FAMILY NEEDS ONE TOO.
TALK TO YOUR FAMILY AND DECIDE WHAT YOUâ€™LL DO.
FOR MORE SIMPLE STEPS GO TO MYFIREPLAN.COM.AU
SUPPORTING INJURED WORKERS AND THEIR FAMILIES www.eml.com.au
STORM, FLOOD & TSUNAMI SAFETY STORMSAFE Are you at risk? Storms can happen anywhere, at any time of the year. It is important to prepare your family and prepare your property now and stay prepared all year round. Storms are the most costly natural disaster to affect NSW. During storms it is important to protect your family and property from the major impacts such as strong winds, hail and rising water levels (flash flooding Damaging winds can bring down trees, branches, power lines, remove roofs and blow around outdoor items, for example outdoor furniture and trampolines • Hail can injure people and damage property Heavy rainfall can cause water to: • damage exposed homes and belongings • rise rapidly, flooding homes, property and roads • drain rapidly making floodwaters, drains, and other water courses a safety hazard Damaging surf can be unsafe and flood homes and properties in coastal areas You may also be indirectly affected by storms; access roads may be blocked or you have no power, utilities or telephone connection. Prepare for a storm NOW There are eight simple things that you can do now to prepare your home and help reduce the potential damage caused by severe storms. 1. Maintain your yard and balcony. Secure or store items that could blow around in strong winds 2. Clean your gutters, downpipes and drains regularly to prevent blockages 3. Trim trees and branches that could potentially fall on your home or property 4. Fix any damage to your roof, including broken or missing tiles 5. Check your insurance policy is current and adequate 6. Make a Home Emergency Plan for your family that outlines what you would do in an emergency 7. Prepare an emergency kit with essential items in case you lose power or need to leave home in an emergency 8. Listen to your local radio station and other media for weather warnings
Learn more about Storm Safety
Download the SES StormSafe app
YOUR EMERGENCY CHECKLIST Your emergency kit provides items you might need if you lose power or need to leave your home in a hurry. Your emergency kit contents: A portable radio with batteries A torch with spare batteries A first aid kit Candles and waterproof matches Important papers including emergency contact numbers Copies of any emergency plan A waterproof bag for valuables When leaving or evacuating your property, place into your emergency kit: Medications Supplies for your baby Supplies for any other people in your care Appropriate clothing and footwear Food and drinking water
STORM, FLOOD AND TSUNAMI SAFETY
YOU CAN DO NOW TO PREPARE FOR STORMS MAINTAIN YARD AND BALCONY
Secure or put away items that could blow around in strong winds
Trim trees and branches that could potentially fall on your home or property
Check your insurance policy is current and adequate
PREPARE AN EMERGENCY KIT
Prepare an emergency kit in case you lose power or need to leave your home (turn over for checklist)
Clean your gutters, downpipes and drains regularly to prevent blockages
FIX ROOF DAMAGE
Fix any damage to your roof including broken or missing tiles
PREPARE AN EMERGENCY PLAN
Make a plan for your family that outlines what you would do in an emergency
LISTEN TO LOCAL RADIO
Listen to your local radio station and other media for weather warnings
When a STORM WARNING is broadcast Servere Weather Warnings and Severe Thunderstorm Warnings are issued by the Bureau of Meterology to alert communities to the threat of severe weather. When a warning is issued for your area (but before the storm arrives), there are a few things you can do to help protect your family and property; • Move indoors, bringing children and pets with you • Park your car under secure cover and away from trees, powerlines and drains. During a storm During a storm, there are simple things you can do to help protect your family: • Never enter or travel through floodwater • Stay indoors, clear of windows • Stay clear of creeks, drains, causeways, gutters, streams, fallen trees, power lines and damaged buildings • If driving, put your hazard lights on and pull over to the side of the road keeping clear of drains, causeways, streams, creeks, trees and power lines • If outdoors, seek secure shelter away from drains, causeways, streams, creeks, trees and power lines • Listen to your local radio station and other media for information, updates and advice • For emergency assistance in floods and storms, call the NSW SES on 132 500 After the storm • Keep listening to your local radio station for information, updates and advice • Check your house or property for damage • Stay clear of creeks, drains, causeways, gutters, streams, fallen trees, power lines and any damaged buildings • Check to see if your neighbours need help • Do not go sightseeing as this may hinder recovery efforts or put yourself and others at risk.
For emergency help in floods and storms call the SES on 132 500 or visit www.ses.nsw.gov.au
For life threatening emergencies call 000.
STORM, FLOOD AND TSUNAMI SAFETY
Learn more about Flood Safety
Learn how to be prepared for a flood
Download the SES FloodSafe app
Are you at risk from floods? If you live close to a creek, river, major stormwater drain or in a low-lying area, you may be at risk from flooding even if you have not experienced it personally. Evacuation warning To prepare for possible evacuation: • Stack possessions, records, stock or equipment on benches and tables, placing electrical items on top • Secure objects that are likely to float and cause damage • Relocate waste containers, chemicals and poisons well above floor level • Activate your Home or Business FloodSafe Plan • Locate important papers, valuables and mementos. • Place them in your Emergency Kit • Keep listening to your local radio station for information, updates and advice • Keep in contact with your neighbours • Be prepared to evacuate if advised by emergency services • Act early as roads may become congested or close
Evacuation orders When you leave: • Turn off the electricity and gas at the mains before you leave and turn off and secure any gas bottles • Take your pets with you • Never enter or travel through floodwater • Keep listening to your local radio station for information, updates and advice • Follow your Home or Business FloodSafe Plan • Follow all instructions given by emergency services During a flood How do I prepare when flooding is about to happen? • Never drive, ride or walk through floodwater • Listen to your local radio station for information, updates and advice • Locate and check you Emergency Kit • Move pets and agisted animals to high ground • Stack possessions, records, stock or equipment on benches and tables, placing electrical items on top • Secure objects that are likely to float and cause damage • Relocate waste containers, chemicals and poisons well above floor level • Activate your Home FloodSafe Plan • Keep in contact with your neighbours and make sure they are aware of the Flood Warning • Be prepared to evacuate if advised by emergency services • Act early as roads may become congested or close.
STORM, FLOOD AND TSUNAMI SAFETY
TSUNAMISAFE What is a Tsunami? A tsunami is a series of waves generated by a number of causes including: • Vertical movement of the sea floor as the result of a large earthquake • Submarine or coastal volcanic eruptions • Meteor impacts • Coastal landslides and slumps, either land-based or submarine Know your warnings You should know the warning types, warning signs, and the official warning channels that may be used, to indicate a tsunami is approaching. Know where to go Find the safest route to travel in the event that you might need to evacuate and identify the point at which your evacuation route may be cut. In many locations, it is likely that you will need to evacuate by foot due to congestion on roads. Find out where any evacuation centres could be set up in your area. If you prefer, check with friends and relatives outside the affected area to organise a place to go. Know who to call • For emergency help in tsunami, call the NSW SES on 132 500 • Keep local emergency numbers handy (in your phone or wallet) • In a life-threatening emergency, call 000 (triple zero) WHEN A TSUNAMI WATCH IS ISSUED The first stage of the process for warning you about a tsunami is a ‘tsunami watch’ phase. This means
that there is the potential for an identified undersea earthquake to cause a tsunami threat to Australia. If there is a threat, the Bureau will issue a National Tsunami Watch. If there is no threat, a National Tsunami No Threat Bulletin will be issued. If there is a possibility of a Land Threat Tsunami emergency services may commence evacuations immediately. People in affected areas: • Locate your Emergency Kit and add any medications, important papers, special items for babies, elderly, clothing, food and water • Locate your Emergency Plan Keep listening to your local radio station or other media for any updates and advice • Follow advice given to you by emergency services ACTIONS TO TAKE WHEN A TSUNAMI WARNING IS ISSUED It is important to act early on warnings as tsunami can reach the coastline quickly and follow the advice of emergency services.
Learn more about Tsunami Safety
Learn more about the SES Home Emergency Plan Checklist
Marine and Immediate Foreshore Warning • Get out of the water and move away from the immediate water’s edge of harbours, coastal estuaries, rock platforms, and beaches • Boats in harbours, estuaries and in shallow coastal water should return to shore. Secure your boat and move away from the waterfront • Vessels already at sea should stay offshore in deep water until further advised • DO NOT go to the coast to watch the tsunami • Check that your neighbours have received this advice. Keep listening to your local radio station and monitor other media for updates and advice.
Do you always hold your child’s hand when you’re out and about near roads? On the footpath, crossing the road or in a car park or driveway, always hold your child’s hand until they’re at least 10 years old.
Is your child sitting safely in the right car seat for their age and size? In the car always check your child is buckled up safely in the right car seat for their age and size, and that the car seat is correctly fitted to the car.
Do you check your child’s helmet before they go riding? Make sure your child always wears a correctly fitted helmet and that they ride in a safe place.
Follow your child’s road safety education journey at www.safetytown.com.au
IED CUS TISF T SA OEMR-OW O
S ER M
“WHY WOULD YOU BUY YOUR TYRES ANYWHERE ELSE?”
TO FIND YOUR NEAREST STORE
Call 13 21 91 or visit tyrepower.com.au
STREET SMART ROAD SAFETY KEEPING YOUR CHILDREN SAFE Children are vulnerable road users. They are at risk in the traffic environment because of their size, their difficulty in judging speed and distance and the fact that they may behave unpredictably. Your child may be able to tell you the rules and how to keep safe near in and around vehicles, but in reality, they will not always be able to apply them. More than one million children in NSW travel to and from school each day by car, bike, public transport or as a pedestrian. 40km/h school zones are in place to help protect children on their way to and from school at the times and places where they are often in high numbers, and every school in NSW has at least one set of school zone flashing lights. The NSW Government also funds the NSW Road Safety Education Program. This program supports delivery of road safety education to children and young people from early childhood to the end of high school. But this alone is not enough and families and carers play a critical role in helping to keep children and young people safe. You can help by following some simple safety steps and by regularly reinforcing important road safety messages with your children.
PEDESTRIAN SAFETY Each year, kids are killed and injured playing near or trying to cross the road. Often, they just forgot to look or are distracted by other things. Key road safety messages to share with your kids: Younger kids • Hold a grown-up’s hand when - you cross the road - you’re on the footpath - you’re in the car park Older kids • Hold an adult’s hand when you cross the road (up to 10) • Use a safe place to cross the road • Stop! Look! Listen! Think! every time you cross the road TIPS FOR FAMILIES: • Children aged up to 8 years old should always hold an adult’s hand whenever they are out and about.
8-9 2 -4
END SCHOOL ZONE
• Children aged up to 10 years old should always be supervised very closely and should hold an adult’s hand when crossing the road. • When crossing the road STOP well back from the kerb, LOOK for any traffic, LISTEN for any approaching vehicles, THINK is it safe to cross. • Use a pedestrian crossing where possible. Take care whenever you cross. Vehicles don’t always stop, even when they should • Always use pedestrian crossings or traffic lights to cross the road • Cross in a group with your friends. A group or pair is more visible than a person on their own • Cross the road completely - roads are not places where you can play • Never run out onto the road without first looking, even if it is a quiet street • Don’t cross between parked cars - often drivers can’t see you and you can’t see them • Always walk on the footpath. If there isn’t one, walk on the side of the road towards approaching cars not on the road • Don’t forget to look out for cyclists who may be riding their bikes on the footpath • At night, carry or wear something light in colour so that drivers can see you more easily
Watch a video on Road Safety
Learn more about the Road Safety Education Program
For more information and activities, visit safetytown.com.au www.childsafetyhub.com.au
Learn more about Child Carseats
Compare Child Carseats using the Child Restraint Evaluation Program
RIDING SAFETY Riding a bike is a fun way to get around and encourages a healthy lifestyle. Research shows that helmets reduce head injuries by up to 74 per cent in crashes with motor vehicles. Wearing a helmet from the moment they start learning to ride will help your child to develop it as a habit and reduce the risk of head injuries. While your child may learn skills such as balancing, pedaling and steering quite easily, they are still learning skills that help them to judge speed, distance and the direction of sound. Your young child will often ride with their head down, concentrating on pedaling, not the environment around them. Your child needs ongoing adult help in safe, off-road locations to gradually develop all their skills. The safest places to ride bikes, scooters and skateboards are within fenced areas. This helps your child from riding or falling onto the footpath or the road. Key road safety messages to share with your kids: Younger kids • Always wear a helmet when you ride or skate • Ride your bike away from the road Older kids • Always wear a helmet when you ride or skate • Ride your bike away from busy roads TIPS FOR FAMILIES • Until at least 10 years old, your child should ride offroad, away from vehicles and driveways. • Always wear a helmet when riding a bike in a public place. It is the law. • Their helmet must be correctly fitted and comply with the Australian and New Zealand Standards. A helmet that is not correctly fitted and fastened does not provide enough protection in a crash. Children aged up to 16 years can ride their bikes on the footpath–. Older children should use the bike lane. • Be visible on the road! Wear light coloured or reflective clothing when you are riding your bike, especially at night.
• Always dismount a bike and wheel it across the road or crossing. • Do not double anyone. Let your friends walk beside your bike if necessary. • Keep your bike in control by keeping both hands on the handle bars at all times. • Drivers will also see you more easily if your bike has a flag and reflectors on both front and rear. • If you’re riding at night, have proper front and rear lights fitted otherwise people cannot see you. • Make yourself heard on the road - check your bike has a horn or a bell. • Check your tyres and brakes regularly. You don’t want the tyre to blow out or your brakes to fail when coming down a hill.
SAFETY IN CARS Key road safety messages to share with your kids: • Click clack front and back • Always buckle up safely • Get in and out of the car on the footpath side Seat Belt Safety The overriding basic rule for the safety of children in cars is for every child to use the right restraint on every trip. National Child Restraints laws: • Children up to the age of six months must be secured in an approved rearward facing restraint. • Children aged from six months old but under four years old must be secured in either a rear or forward facing approved child restraint with an inbuilt harness. • Children under four years old cannot travel in the front seat of a vehicle with two or more rows. • Children aged from four years old but under seven years old must be secured in a forward facing approved child restraint with an inbuilt harness or an approved booster seat. • Children aged from four years old but under seven years old cannot travel in the front seat of a vehicle with two or more rows, unless all other back seats are occupied by children younger than seven years in an approved child restraint or booster seat.
Up to 6 months
6 months to 4 years
145cm or taller
Approved rear facing child car seat.
Approved rear or forward facing child car seat.
Approved forward facing child car seat or booster seat.
Suggested minimum height to use adult lap-sash seatbelt.
• Children aged from seven years old but under 16 years old who are too small to be restrained by a seatbelt properly adjusted and fastened are strongly recommended to use an approved booster seat. • Children in booster seats must be restrained by a suitable lap and sash type approved seatbelt that is properly adjusted and fastened, or by a suitable approved child safety harness that is properly adjusted and fastened. For detailed information on correct child restraint visit childcarseats.com.au OTHER IMPORTANT THINGS TO REMEMBER: • If your child is too small for a restraint specified for their age, they should stay in their current restraint for as long as necessary • If your child is too large for a restraint specified for their age, they may move to the next level of restraint • It is important to check that the restraint is properly fitted. • Children must use a child restraint on every trip • Children should always get in and out of the car using the Safety Door which is the rear kerb side door What you must not do? • Do not carry a child on your lap. It is impossible to hold onto a child in a crash and it is illegal. • Do not put two children in one seat belt as it is not safe and is illegal; in a crash they can be injured by colliding with each other. • Do not sit a child on an adult’s lap with the seat belt around both of them. The child is likely to be crushed by the adult’s weight against the seat belt and it is illegal. • Let children ride in the luggage space of cars. This is also illegal and very dangerous. All children must be restrained in an appropriate child restraint.
GENERAL SAFETY IN THE CAR Drive carefully, take rests, take care in the heat Fasten your seat belt and make sure every-one is safely and appropriately restrained before starting the car. Many crashes are the result of driver error and fatigue. Rest stops help restore concentration, and beat drowsiness. Babies, toddlers and children lose fluid quickly so it is important when travelling on hot days, to allow extra time for stops and to provide plenty of cool water or fluids. Never leave your child in a car for any period of time without adult supervision. Driver Distraction Don’t let your children’s behaviour distract you. Keep them occupied by talking or singing to them; provide soft toys to play with. On long trips, provide unspillable drinks, healthy snack foods; and avoid milkbased drinks for carsick- prone children. Take regular
driver breaks and let the children out to run around. SAFE TRAVEL • Do not leave your children in the car for any period of time without adult supervision. • Provide plenty of cool water or fluids regularly during your journey. • Wear loose fitting, lightweight clothes when travelling in hot weather. • Travel in the cooler hours of the day. • Stop every two hours so all passengers, including children, have an opportunity to move freely. • Adjust restraint harness each time you use it, particularly in summer when children are wearing lightweight clothing. • Be careful using a hood on a child restraint to protect a child from the sun as it may reduce air flow and lead to over-heating. • A window visor or sunshade may be a better alternative. • On every trip, short or long, take the time to check your children’s safety by re-checking the fit of their harnesses. • Regularly service your car and ensure the air conditioning is working effectively before going on long trips.
MOBILE PHONE USE The dangers of distraction Driving is a complex task. Anything that takes your mind or eyes off the road, or your hands off the wheel, not only compromises your safety, but that of everyone else on the road. Being distracted increases your chances of having a crash. It slows down your reaction times and puts you in danger of failing to see hazards such as traffic lights, stop signs or other road users, including pedestrians and cyclists. From 1 December 2019, mobile phone detection cameras are targeting illegal phone use across NSW and include fixed and transportable trailer-mounted cameras. Together, these cameras will target illegal mobile phone use anywhere, anytime. Make sure you know the rules for mobile use when driving, and take time to find ways to reduce the temptation to use your phone illegally when driving. It is illegal to hold and use your mobile phone in NSW. Our Get your hand off it campaign warns drivers of the dangers of illegal mobile phone use and the serious consequences of taking your eyes off the road.
Learn more about Mobile Phone Use
Watch a video on mobile phone laws
For detailed information on mobile phone use, visit roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov.au/stayingsafe/ mobilephones/ www.childsafetyhub.com.au
Take care when stepping on and off the train.
Rail safety checklist – keep your child safe Teaching children how to be safe around trains is just as important as teaching them to look both ways before crossing the road. Use this checklist the next time you catch a train together. The good habits they learn from you could save their life.
Always stay off train tracks
Remember trains can’t stop suddenly or swerve
If you drop something on the tracks, never try to get it yourself. Jumping onto the tracks is very dangerous because a train might be coming. Always ask station staff for help to get it back.
A train travelling at 60km per hour (the same speed as a car on a main road) takes the length of two and a half football fields to stop! Even if a driver sees you, they may not be able to stop in time. Because they travel on tracks, they can’t swerve if something is in their path.
Stop, look, listen, think
Wait for the lights and bells to finish
Platform safety Stay behind the yellow line When you are walking on the platform or waiting for a train, stay well back from the yellow line in case you accidentally slip or get pushed. Always walk, and wait behind the yellow line.
Mind the gap
Hold hands and always walk
Always use the footpath Only cross at pedestrian level crossings designed for people to cross. Walk between the double yellow lines on the footpath and keep looking left, right and ahead.
How do I get help?
Ask a staff member in uniform
Press the Emergency Help Point button
If you need help or feel unsafe, ask staff on the train, station staff or police. They are there to help you.
In an emergency, look for the orange Emergency Help Point button on the train or platform and press it. When staff answer, tell them what happened – it’s just like talking on the phone. They can see you on camera and will send someone to help.
There is a gap between the train and platform – when you get on and off the train you could fall into the gap and get hurt. Always hold an adult’s hand and watch where you step.
The platform is not a place to run, bounce balls or play games. You can do that at the park! Always walk, and hold an adult’s hand on the platform.
Be extra alert before you cross at a pedestrian level crossing: Stop behind the gate or yellow line. Look left and right for trains coming. Listen for trains – they might be closer than you think. Think is it safe to cross? Am I holding an adult’s hand? If there is no danger, you can walk. Keep on looking left, right and ahead.
If the pedestrian level crossing has lights or bells, never cross while they are flashing or ringing. Always wait until they finish, then stop, look, listen and think before you cross.
Always use a bridge, overpass or crossing Tracks are for trains only. Bridges, overpasses and pedestrian level crossings are for people. When you have to get to the other side of the tracks, always use the bridge, overpass or pedestrian level crossing to get there safely.
Move and report If you ever feel unsafe: Move to another carriage or a safer part of the station. Report what you’re afraid of. Tell the adult who is with you, station staff or a police officer, or press the Emergency Help Point button. You can also call Triple Zero (000).
STREET SMART Learn more about Driveway Safety
Watch a video on Driveway Safety
DRIVEWAY SAFETY Simple steps can make all the difference We all have a role to play when it comes to driveway safety. Your young child counts on you to supervise them near vehicles, and separate see where play areas theyfrom are atdriveways all times. and see where they are at all times. SUPERVISE - - When children are around driveways, they should be actively supervised by an adult who is holding their hand. Ensure that young children are placed securely in a vehicle before moving it. SEPARATE - Treat the driveway like a road. Do not let children use the driveway as a play area. Separate children’s play spaces from garages and driveways. Home design features can help, including fences, high handles on garage doors and self-closing doors or gates. SEE - All vehicles have blind spots. While reversing sensors and cameras can assist with reducing blind spots, it can be difficult to notice a small child until it is too late. It is important not to become complacent. Drivers should get into the habit of walking around their vehicle before starting it, especially when leaving an area where a young child could be present.
KIDS IN HOT CARS - WARNING
Watch a video on Hot Kids in Cars Safety by Chef Matt Moran
Why are children at risk? The temperature inside a parked car can be more than 30 degrees hotter than outside. Children are particularly at risk because they lose fluid quickly. Dehydrated children are at risk of suffering potentially life threatening heatstroke. There are a number of situations that can lead to an incident; changes in a normal routine or the keys being accidentally locked inside can result in a child being left in a car unintentionally. Parents sometimes choose to leave their child unattended, thinking they will only be gone for a few minutes. This can easily turn into ten to fifteen minutes and because the temperature rise in a vehicle is so rapid, even a short amount of time can place them in extreme danger.
KIDS IN HOT CARS - THE NUMBERS
5,000 Every year across Australia, approximately 5,000 children have to be rescued from cars.
30+ The temperature inside a parked car can be over 30 degrees hotter than outside.
of total temperature rise occurs within the first 5 minutes of parking a car.
70°C Even on a cooler day, temperatures inside a car can reach well above 70°C
Three quarters of children rescued from cars are aged under four years old.
REDUCE THE RISKS • Never leave a child unattended in a car • If you have to leave the car, even for a minute, always take the children with you • Create a ‘look before you leave’ routine whenever you get out of the car • Leave something in the back seat that you will need to take with you (e.g. handbag or laptop) as a reminder that you have a child with you • Remember that large cars heat up just as fast as smaller ones • Lock cars and secure keys out of reach of children to prevent children gaining access to and playing inside the car
WHAT IF I FIND A CHILD UNATTENDED IN A CAR? • Look for the parents or carers. • If they can’t be found, if the child is distressed or you are concerned about the child’s health, don’t delay – call 000 and ask for the Fire Brigade. • Give your location, the vehicle registration number, the approximate age of the child and the condition of the child. • If the car is unlocked, open the doors and shield windows with a blanket etc. • Wait for emergency services, or safely try to remove the child from the vehicle if you are concerned about the child’s condition as every second counts!
Learn more about Kids Unattended in Cars
TRAIN SAFETY • You might not hear a train, especially when using your earphones or mobile phone. N ever assume a train is a long way off. • Don’t ride bicycles, skateboards, skates or roller-blades across any pedestrian crossing. • Never assume that it is safe to cross when the lights are still flashing. Even if a train has passed, there may be another train coming in the other direction. Only enter the crossing when the lights have stopped flashing or the gate has opened. It takes a lot to stop an eight-carriage train travelling at 100kmh. The braking distance for a train is approximately five football fields (500m).
HERE’S SOME ADVICE THAT COULD SAVE YOUR LIFE: • Stop, look, listen and think at level crossings. • Obey the safety signs at every railway crossing and cross at marked crossings only. • Stay on the path. Listen and look in both directions for approaching trains. • If the red lights are flashing or the gate is closed, a train is coming so keep clear of the tracks. • Never jump fences, gates or barriers. This is extremely dangerous and it is very likely the oncoming train is close to the crossing. • If a train is coming, wait for it to pass and then stop, look and listen again before crossing as another train may be approaching.
Learn more about Train Safety
Information reproduced with permission of Transport Sydney Trains – www.sydneytrains.info
RAIL CROSSING SAFETY Always cross train tracks using a footbridge or underpass, or at designated pedestrian railway crossings. Crossing anywhere else is illegal and extremely dangerous.
Railway Crossings RA
I SS O W
Left Sign: Railway crossing with traffic lights ahead. Centre & Right Signs: Railway crossing signs.
IN SS O WA R
I SS O W 2
STOP ON RED SIGNAL
I SS O W 2
Learn more about Railway Crossing Safety
Left Sign: Stop before crossing. Centre Sign: Stop if the red lights are flashing. Right Sign: Give way at the crossing, be prepared to stop.
LIGHT RAIL SAFETY
Learn more about Light Rail Safety
Watch a video on Light Rail Safety
Safety when travelling by light rail
Safety when travelling by metro and train
Light rail stops and platforms • Keep the pathway clear around you at the stop to allow others to walk past safely. • When waiting on the platform, stand back from the track behind the yellow line. • Wait until the light rail has come to a complete stop before attempting to board. • Never touch a moving vehicle. • If you have dropped something on the track, do not collect it yourself. Use the Emergency Help Point on the platform to receive assistance. • Be cautious when crossing the tracks. Never cross if a vehicle is approaching. Follow the guidelines for level crossing safety.
Metro video help points Each Metro station will have up to twelve video help points. When the blue button is pressed for general assistance the call will be connected via a video feed directly to staff at the control centre. When the green emergency button is pressed, the call will be prioritised and a trained operations control centre staff member will respond to your emergency.
Boarding and travelling on the light rail • Stand back to allow passengers to get off the light rail before you get on. • If travelling with a pram and young children, hold their hands when boarding to ensure they are not left behind. • Do not board at the rear and front single doors if you have a pram, bike or other large item. Please note that bikes are not allowed on Newcastle light rail. • Mind the gap and be careful getting on and off the light rail. • Take a seat if one is available or hold onto a handrail. • If you are concerned about your safety or the safety of others, or in an emergency, please: • Move away from danger if possible • Alert the driver by using the Emergency Help Point on board • Listen for instructions from the driver
GUIDELINES FOR STATIONS, PLATFORMS AND ON BOARD THE TRAIN • Do not rush through the ticket gates, the doors of the metro, train or lift, as you can get injured. • If you have luggage, use the lifts to get to and from the platform. • When using the escalator, stand to the left and hold onto the side rails. • When waiting on a train platform, stand back from the track behind the yellow line and wait until the train has come to a complete stop. • Do not touch the metro or train doors, or the metro station platform screen doors when they are opening and closing. • Stand back to allow passengers to get off the metro or train before you get on. • Mind the gap when getting on and off the metro or train. • Keep a hold of prams when on board as metro and train services can move suddenly. • Once on board, either take a seat or hold onto the handrail. • Offer your seat to someone who needs it more than you. This includes customers who are older,
have a disability, impaired mobility, are pregnant or travelling with children. Keep your head, arms and legs clear of the aisle when seated. Try to avoid moving between carriages while a metro or train is moving. If you need to, always take care. Never attempt to get on or off a moving metro or train: - after the departure whistle has blown - when the “doors closing” signal sounds - when the station staff announce the trains doors closing. If you are concerned about your safety or others: - move away from the danger into another carriage - use the Emergency Help Points to alert staff and listen for instructions.
Travelling with prams and children • If you have a pram, use the lifts to get to and from the platform. • When travelling with young children, hold their hands on platforms, escalators and when getting on and off the train. • Always keep a firm hold of your pram at the station. Ensure the brake is on and the pram is parked parallel to the train tracks. • Never leave children, luggage or packages unattended on station platforms. Plan ahead and follow our guidelines for travelling with prams and young children on public transport.
Security on the rail network • There are more than 10,000 CCTV cameras across the train network in NSW and more than 1,340 CCTV cameras across the Sydney Metro network, with 38 CCTV cameras on each metro train. • Police and transport officers regularly patrol metro and train services and stations. • On Friday and Saturday nights between 3.00pm and 6.00am, Police Transport Command officers both in high visibility uniforms and plain clothing, patrol public transport to improve security and reduce crime. • For safety, sit near other passengers at the station and on the train. • On the train, sit near the guard’s compartment indicated with the blue light. • On the platform, stand in an area covered by CCTV and close to Emergency Help Points. If travelling at night, stand where it is brightly lit. • If you’re using a station car park and plan to return after dark, try to park in a well-lit area close to the station entrance. Make sure all of the windows are locked and valuables are out of sight. Turn your car alarm on. • If you see bad behaviour or feel unsafe, inform staff straight away. • In an emergency, call 000 or use the Emergency Help Points to speak to staff for assistance. • Emergency Help Points are located on metro trains and trains and at least one fitted at each station. • If you need immediate help, please contact the police on 000 or talk with staff.
Download brochure: Heads Up - Play it safe around Light Rail
Learn more about the Sydney Metro
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SCHOOL BUS SAFETY DID YOU KNOW? Every day, more than a million NSW school children travel to and from school in safety - many of them by bus. The school bus is an extremely safe form of transport for school students. Traffic congestion outside the school can increase when many families resort to driving short distances to and from school. On and off the bus safely Your child is most at risk in the minutes after getting off the bus. You can reduce this risk. Meet your child (or arrange for another trusted adult to meet your child) at the bus stop, never on the opposite side of the road. Wait until the bus has been driven away before choosing the safest place to cross the road, then follow the usual road crossing procedures with your children. STOP! One step back from the kerb. LOOK! For traffic to your right, left and right again. LISTEN! For the sounds of approaching traffic. THINK! Whether it is safe to cross.
Teach your children to keep turning their head in both directions to look and listen for traffic as they cross the road.While waiting at the bus stop, stand well away from the passing traffic. Never wait right at the kerb. Remind your children that when a bus is fitted with seatbelts, they must buckle up. Until they turn ten, hold hands with your child as you cross the road. Driving near school buses There is a 40km/h speed limit for traffic passing a school bus that is setting down or picking up school children. This speed limit is for all traffic travelling in the same direction as the bus, whether the bus is stationary or moving. The 40km/h speed limit must be obeyed when the rear wig wag lights on the bus flash. Flashing headlights on these buses also alert oncoming motorists that children are close by. As a driver, remember: When the lights on the bus are flashing, you must slow down to 40 km/h. Never park in or near a bus stop or bus zone. For information about fines and demerit points, visit rms.nsw.gov.au
Learn more about Bus Safety
Watch a video on Bus Safety
Download brochure: Bus Safety for School Students
FERRY SAFETY Catching a ferry is a great way to add fun and excitement to family outings – which makes it tempting to play on wharves and on board. Running around can be dangerous. With so much water around, it’s important to be careful. Be at the wharf at least five minutes before your ferry is due to leave so you have time to board safely, and remember that ferries are not playgrounds. SAFETY HINTS • Don’t run around on the wharf, and don’t go near the edge. Hold an adult’s hand when you get on and off. • Yellow and black stripes on wharves mean danger. Stay away from them – they are a no-go zone. • Don’t run around on board, and never climb on or over railings. It is easy to fall over, and you could even fall into the water. • Look for the big orange Emergency Help Point on wharves. In an emergency (like someone falling into the water) press the button and talk into it like a phone. Staff can see you and talk to you, and will send someone straight away. • Tell the ferry crew if you feel like you are in trouble or need help. They are there to keep you safe.
PRAMS AND STROLLERS • Small children need a helping hand to get through ticket gates. When you travel as a family, or with a pram or stroller, use the wide gates. • Keep a firm hold while you are on the wharf, and use the brakes. • Larger prams and strollers may not fit on gangways and will need to be collapsed before boarding. • If possible on board, collapse and store strollers and prams, and sit your child on your lap or on the seat next to you. • If you prefer to keep your child in the pram or stroller, put the brakes on and hold it firmly at all times.
Learn more about Ferry Safety
Ferries are just one type of public transport in NSW you and your family can use. You can also travel on trains, buses and light rail. What they all have in common is how much they care about the safety of you and your family. Please follow any special rules they have to keep you safe.
Stay clear when powerlines are near – electricity can jump!
Stay safe and at least 8 metres away from fallen powerlines.
Electrical appliances can bite if they’re not used right.
Keep away from electrical equipment and enclosures – leave it to the experts!
For more electricity safety information, visit essentialenergy.com.au/education
If you feel a shock or a tingle from a tap or an electrical appliance, tell an adult to report it immediately.
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OUTDOOR SAFETY SUN SAFETY Cancer Council NSW recommends protecting your skin in five ways: 1. SLIP – on clothing that covers your arms and legs 2. SLOP – on 50+ or higher, broadspectrum sunscreen 3. SLAP – on a broad brimmed bucket or legionnaire hat 4. SEEK – shade 5. SLIDE – on wrap-around sunglasses with Australian Standard AS/NZS 1067:2003 and have an eye protection factor of (EPF) of 10. CLOTHING (SLIP) Protective clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts and loose clothing with a close weave can prevent skin damage from the sun. Some clothing is labelled with information about its ultraviolet protection factor (UPF). UPF-40 or above offers very high protection and UPF-15 and above offers good protection. SUNSCREEN (SLOP) Broad spectrum sunscreen means it protects you from both types of radiation (UVA and UVB).4 The higher the sun protection factor (SPF) number, the better it protects you against sunburn. Most people don’t use enough sunscreen, meaning they don’t get enough protection.2 Sunscreen should be applied 20 minutes before going in the sun and then reapplied every two hours. HATS (SLAP) Choose a hat that is broad-brimmed or with a flap at the front and back (legionnaire style) so that your child’s face, ears and neck are protected. A hat made of close-weave fabric will reduce the amount of light that gets through. Baseball caps and sun visors are not recommended as they do not provide enough protection. SHADE (SEEK) Shade is more ideal than full sun, however sunburn can still occur in partial shade or when cloudy. SUNGLASSES (SLIDE) Sunglasses can protect your child’s eyes from short and long term damage. Sunglasses designed to wrap around the eyes do this well. Always purchase sunglasses which meet the Australian Standard (AS/ NZS 1067:2003). Sunglasses with an eye protection factor (EPF) value of 9 or 10 protect from almost all UVR.5 Toy sunglasses are not covered by the Standard and should not be used for sun protection. Sunglasses or goggles at the snow will also help to reduce exposure from glare and reflected UVR.
Learn more about Sun Safety
Remember: • A suntan is not healthy. • More care should be taken when your child is out in the sun near highly reflective surfaces such as snow or water. • Babies and children are at greater risk of heat stress than adults. • Never leave a baby or child alone in a car. If you need to leave, always take your child with you. • Remember to slip, slop, slap, seek and slide Clothing (slip) • Encourage your children to wear clothing that covers as much skin as possible. Sunscreen (slop) • Broad-spectrum, water resistant sunscreen with a high SPF (50) should always be applied to children when playing outdoors. Apply generously and frequently (at least every two hours), particularly after swimming (always follow directions on sunscreen bottles). Hats (slap) • Ensure your child always wears a hat when outdoors which covers their face, ears and neck. Shade (seek) • Limit your children’s exposure to UVR. Seek shade between 11am and 3pm (daylight saving time) when UV levels are at their highest. • Children under 12 months of age should not be exposed to direct sunlight.6 • When travelling in a car with your baby, make sure they are shaded. The sunlight which passes through the car window can burn your child’s skin. Sunglasses (slide) Ensure your child wears sunglasses that meet the Australian Standards. Water and dehydration • Active children should be encouraged to drink regularly to prevent thirstiness. Regular drink breaks during activity are important. • Vigorous physical activity should be avoided in hot weather. • Seek urgent medical assistance if your child shows any signs of heat stroke. • Extra care needs to be taken with sick children or babies in hot weather. Extra fluids, such as breast milk or water, should be given to prevent the risk of dehydration. Childrens Hospital Westmead www.childsafetyhub.com.au
Learn more about Beach Safety
BEACH SAFETY Millions of people visit at least one of Australia’s beautiful beaches every year. These famous beaches are not only enjoyed by lucky Australians but also visitors from all over the world – some who come for a visit, and others who choose to make Australia their home. Although Australian beaches may look amazing, they can be unpredictable and hide some dangers that every visitor should be aware of. Here you will find some very helpful info and advice from our Lifeguards on beach safety, to ensure you enjoy your visit to the beach and stay safe! Always swim between the red and yellow flags When you see red and yellow flags on a beach, it indicates that there is currently a lifesaving service operating on that beach. The lifeguards have chosen a section of the beach that is best for swimming and they will closely supervise this area. Lifeguards pay more attention to the area between the red and yellow flags than any other part of the beach. Read the safety signs Before you go on to the beach be sure to read the safety signs. This will ensure you are aware of any warnings or dangers on the beach. You can also find other helpful information to make your day at the beach more enjoyable. You might also find single signs placed on the beach to highlight specific warnings.
Ask a lifeguard for safety advice Lifeguards are highly trained and very knowledgeable about beach safety and conditions. When you arrive at the beach look for and identify the lifeguards. Feel free to ask them about the day’s conditions, as well any additional beach safety advice they might have for that specific beach – because every beach is different. Swim with a friend Not only is swimming with a friend (or family member) a fun way to enjoy the beach, it is also very sensible. While you are swimming together you can keep an eye out for each other, and if further assistance is required, one person could call or go for help. If everyone swimming together knows their own limits it is a good idea to share this with those around you so you can all stay within everyone’s comfortable limits. If you need help, stay calm and attract attention Even the most careful people can find themselves out of their limits in the water. If you are not feeling comfortable in the water and you require a lifeguard’s assistance to get back to shore, stay calm, raise your arm in the air and wave it from side to side. This will attract the attention of a lifeguard who will be able to come to your assistance. You should conserve your energy by floating on your back and staying calm. This will ensure you have the energy to remain afloat until further aid arrives.
RIP CURRENTS Rips are the number one hazard on Australian beaches. The best way to avoid a rip is to swim at a patrolled beach between the red and yellow flags. Rip currents are strong currents of water flowing away from shore through the surf zone. They are a strong force and on any given day, there are about 17,000 rips at beaches around Australia. The Facts about Rip Currents There are many myths about the ocean. Many people think it’s just tourists and poor swimmers who get caught in rips currents. In fact, it’s young men aged 15-39 years who are most likely to die in rips. Rips are the number one hazard on Australian beaches. The best way to avoid a rip is to swim at a patrolled beach between the red and yellow flags. How to Spot a Rip Current Rips are complex, can quickly change shape and location, and at times, are difficult to see. The things to look for are; • Deeper, dark-coloured water. • Fewer breaking waves. • A rippled surface surrounded by smooth waters. • Anything floating out to sea or foamy, discoloured, sandy, water flowing out beyond the waves. Rips don’t always show all of these signs at once.
Watch The Facts about Rip Currents video
How to Survive a Rip Current • Relax – stay calm and float to conserve your energy. • Raise – raise your arm and attract attention from lifeguards or lifesavers. • Rescue – the lifeguards or lifesavers will be on their way to help you. • While floating, rip currents may flow in a circular pattern and return you to an adjacent sandbar • You may escape the rip current by swimming parallel to the beach, towards the breaking waves. • Reassess your situation. If what you’re doing isn’t working, try one of the other options until you’re rescued or return to shore.
Learn How to Spot a Rip
Learn How to Survive a Rip
SUN SAFETY AND HEAT STROKE
Learn more about how to beat the heat
Learn more about sun safety and heat stroke
Download the sun safety and heat stroke fact sheet
What is sun safety and heat stroke? Enjoying the sun during outdoor activities is a favourite pastime for many people living in Australia. Too much sun, however, has been shown to cause skin damage and skin cancer. Sun safety practices can protect you and your children from the damaging effects of the sun and reduce the likelihood of long term harm. How may a child be affected? Young children produce more body heat, sweat less and their temperature rises at a faster rate, putting them at a greater risk of heat related illness. Heat Exhaustion • Very hot and extreme heat conditions can lead to heat exhaustion in children. Signs of heat exhaustion are weakness, nausea and/or giddiness, pale appearance and breathlessness. Heat exhaustion is a serious condition that can develop into heat stroke. Signs and symptoms • Looking unwell and more irritable than usual • Pale and clammy skin • Sleepy and floppy • Fewer wet nappies than usual • Dark urine (normal is light straw colour) • Refusing to drink • Intense thirst (but as the baby gets weaker, he/she may drink less) • Dry skin, mouth and eyes (no tears when crying) What to do – first aid • If you think your young child is suffering from heat exhaustion, seek medical advice. • Move to a cool area and remove all extra clothes • Try to give your child drinks (unless unconscious and not able to swallow) • An older child with heat exhaustion should be offered water or diluted fruit juice (1 part juice in 4 parts water) • Cover your child with cool damp cloths or sponge he/she down with water
Heat Stroke • Heat stroke occurs when a child’s body temperature rises too high, too quickly. A child’s normal body temperature ranges between 36.50°C and 37.50°C. When a child suffers from heat stroke, their temperature can rise to 40.50°C or higher. Humid weather and dehydration can make it difficult for the child to sweat and cool themselves down enough to maintain a healthy temperature. If severe enough, it can cause damage to the body organs and be fatal. • Temperatures inside a car can reach over 700°C, even on a cool day. The car increases in temperature the most within the first five minutes of parking a car. Leaving the windows down only provides a small drop in temperature. As a result children left in cars are at a very high risk of heat stroke. Signs and symptoms All the signs of heat exhaustion as above plus: • Rising body temperature • Red, hot and dry skin • Rapid breathing • Vomiting • Confusion • Coma (not responding when touched or called) What to do – first aid Immediately call 000 and ask for an ambulance • Move to a cool area and remove all extra clothes • If the baby or child is conscious and able to drink, give small sips of cool fluids • Bring their temperature down using any method available (sponging with cool water, cool bath, or covering with cool damp cloths) • If unconscious, lay the child on their side (recovery position) and check they can breathe properly. Support their head with your hand • Perform CPR if needed
For more information visit: • https://kidshealth.schn.health.nsw.gov.au/sun-safetyand-heat-stroke • https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/ beattheheat/Pages/babies-children-hot-weather.aspx
KIDS ON BOATS It’s important to teach kids about safe boating right from the start of their boating life. Teaching them about safe boating practices such as navigation, safety equipment and emergency procedures will ensure they have a safe and enjoyable time on the water. Some things to consider when introducing your children to boating include: • Showing them around the boat, where all safety equipment is located and how to use it in case of an emergency • Teaching them the rules about keeping a good lookout, keeping a safe distance from others, travelling at a safe speed and reducing wash • Educating them about keeping all parts of their body inside the vessel when the boat is underway. WEAR A LIFEJACKET Lifejackets save lives and are the most important piece of safety equipment on any recreational vessel. Every person on board must have access to a lifejacket that is the correct size and in good condition. New rules apply in NSW and lifejackets must be worn in many situations, including if you are: • Under 12 years of age at all times on a vessel under 4.8 metres and in open areas of vessels under 8 metres when underway • On all boats less than 4.8 metres by everyone, when boating alone, at night, on open (ocean) waters or on alpine waters • On a personal watercraft (PWC) • On canoes and kayaks in many circumstances • Being towed ie water-skiing, wakeboarding, tubing etc • Instructed to by the skipper. Older children are encouraged to wear an appropriate lifejacket at all times, especially when in open areas of a boat.
SAFE AND RESPONSIBLE BOATING The skipper of every boat is responsible for the safety of their vessel and the people on board. As the skipper, take time to ensure the boat is ready and consider the safety issues associated with your activity and the waterway. Be mindful that hazardous situations can develop with children on board, so ensure
you are aware of all children’s positions and movements on the boat at all times. For more information on boating safely with children, visit rms.nsw.gov.au/maritime or call the info line 13 12 36.
Learn more about Wearing a Lifejacket
Further information on lifejackets can be found at rms.nsw.gov.au/lifejackets or lifejacketwearit.com.au.
CHOOSE TO WEAR A LIFEJACKET OR CHOOSE TO RISK IT ALL
VISIT LIFEJACKETWEARIT.COM.AU www.childsafetyhub.com.au
PETS AND CHILDREN Things to remember: We’ve long loved dogs for being man’s best friend, but not so well known is that our pets can actually make us physically and mentally healthier. Just the presence of our pets can lift our spirits and help us relax. Physical health benefits Research has shown that owning a pet can have a number of physical health benefits • Increased cardiovascular health (lower blood pressure, lower triglycerides and in men, lower cholesterol) • Increased physical activity. Dogs especially help us get out and enjoy the outdoors while getting some regular exercise. They are great motivators and personal trainers, never wanting to miss a training session no matter the weather. • Fewer visits to the doctor • Growing up with a dog (and other pets to a lesser extent) during infancy may help to strengthen the immune system and may reduce the risk of allergies • Children who have pets are less likely to miss days of school due to illness
Psychological benefits Research has shown that owning a pet can have a number of psychological benefits • A study of school children showed that pet owners were more popular but also seemed more empathetic. • Those who have pets including children or adolescents have been shown to have higher selfesteem. Teenagers who own pets have a more positive outlook on life and report less loneliness, restlessness, despair and boredom. • Pet owners report less depression and appear to cope with grief, stress and loss better than nonpet owners. • Pets enhance social connectedness and social skills and are great conversation starters! • Pets are also great caregivers. They keep us company when we’re sick or feeling down. They can make us feel safe while we’re home alone and they keep an eye on the house while we’re out.
For more information visit: www.rspca.org.au
OFF-ROAD MOTORCYCLE SAFETY Off road motorcycles are 2-wheeled vehicles that require the user to shift their body weight while riding. People do not need a licence to ride them as long as they are not on public roads. Off-road motorcycles are popular for sports and recreation but also farm use as well. How may a child be injured? Injuries occur in a variety of settings (e.g. at home, on farms, in recreational areas and at Motocross competitions). Children sustain injuries from collisions, rollovers, falls and from jumps. Children may collide with objects and other riders, causing injuries to themselves and others. Loss of control is the most common cause of injury. This is because children aged less than 10 years lack hazard perception and the ability to control speed. Falls • Falls may result in severe fractures, abdominal, head and chest injuries. Cuts and bruises • Children may sustain cuts and bruises, particularly when they are not wearing full body protective clothing. Strangulation • Children may suffer strangulation if riding under a clothesline or fence. This injury occurs during times of poor visibility or if terrain is uneven. Struck by object • Children may collide with objects and other riders, causing injury to themselves and others. • Children may be injured when the motorcycle tips over and falls on them. In NSW between 2003 and 2012 there were 13 deaths of children aged 0-17 from off-road motorcycles, otherwise know as “dirt bikes”. The likelihood of serious injuries rapidly increases when riders start doing jumps. Children injured from jumps suffer more severe injuries. Is there a Law or an Australian Standard for offroad motorcycles? Riders of motorcycles on NSW roads must be at least 16 years and nine months and obtain a rider licence by completing a training course and knowledge test. However there are no requirements to use motorcycles off-road on private property. Significant fines apply for riding off-road motorcycles on public land, which includes State Forests and National Parks.
SKATEBOARDS, FOOT SCOOTERS AND ROLLERBLADES The law A pedestrian includes “a person in or on a wheeled recreational device or wheeled toy”. This includes rollerblades, a skateboard, scooter, unicycle or similar wheeled device: • Foot scooters, skateboards and rollerblades may be ridden on footpaths unless signs specifically prohibit them, however, riders must keep to the left and give way to other pedestrians • Powered foot scooters cannot be registered and can only be used on private land • On separated bicycle and pedestrian paths, foot scooter, skateboard and rollerblade riders must use the section designated for bicycles, but must keep out of the path of any bicycle • Foot scooters, skateboards and rollerblades can only be used on the road during daylight hours • They cannot be used on roads with a dividing line or median strip or a speed limit greater than 50km/h, or a one-way road with more than one marked lane
Learn more about skateboards, foot scooters and rollerblade safety
Safety advice • On the footpath, riders of foot scooters, skateboards or rollerblades should not threaten pedestrians, especially the elderly – they may need to slow down or dismount in busy areas • To improve safety and enjoyment, foot scooters, skateboards and rollerblades are best ridden in recreational areas designated for their use • Foot scooter, skateboard and rollerblade riders should wear helmets and protective gear such as knee and elbow pads
Donâ€™t touch it, report it. UXO.
Curiosity Can Kill You. You need to understand the real danger of unexploded ordnance (UXO). If you touch UXO like an old bomb, bullet or hand grenade - it could seriously injure or even kill you. You must know - Donâ€™t Touch It!
Report it to the Police on OOO
KIDS ON FARMS Tips to help keep kidssafe on farms environment. Dangers come especially from farm machinery, chemicals, water and animals. PLAY SAFETY Farms provide a wonderful environment for children to grown up in and to visit. However, they are working environments and there can be many dangers and hazards for children. These safety tips are aimed at reducing injuries so that farms continue to be great places to live, learn and have fun. VEHICLE SAFETY Vehicles and machinery are an essential part of farm life. Unfortunately they are also a leading cause of injury.
• Children should not ride on tractors or in the back of utes. • Children should not ride quad bikes or be carried as passengers on quad bikes. • Always supervise children when vehicles are being moved. Hold hands with young children. • Ensure all children are appropriately and correctly restrained when travelling in vehicles on the farm. • Take keys out of vehicles and machinery when not in use and put out of reach of children. • Always ensure children wear helmets and other protective equipment when riding bikes. • Check that the bike is suited to the child’s size and ability. For more information you can also visit: farmsafe.org.au royallifesaving.com.au
Learn more about Keeping Kids Safe on Farms
Watch a video on Farm Safety for Kids
FARM WATER SAFETY Q. Where do toddlers commonly drown on farms? A. The most common location for toddler drowning deaths on farms are dams. However, the farm environment has a range of other water locations including dams, troughs, irrigation channels, water tanks and swimming pools.
is securely fenced and helps to prevent a young child from entering the farm without adult supervision. Pool fencing requirements, including appropriate ‘child resistant’ gates and latches, can be used as a guide in planning a safe play area. For more information visit www.keepwatch.com. au for Fact Sheet No. 6 Child Safe Play Areas.
Q. How many children drown on farms? A. On average 4 children under the age of five drown in farm dams every year and there are approximately 3 hospitalisations for every drowning death.
Q. Why do parents leave their children unsupervised? A. There are many reasons why a parent’s attention can be diverted from their child. Busy lifestyles, phone calls, visitors, preparing meals and other siblings are just some of the things which demand attention. The Keep Watch program advocates for supervision to be supported by fenced Child Safe Play Areas, water awareness and resuscitation skills.. been educating Australian parents and carers on how to keep their children safe when in, on, or around the water in a variety of locations. We are now tailoring the approach to locations with specific hazards – like those found on a farm.
Q. How do I keep my child safe? A. In rural areas, it is not always feasible to fence off large water bodies such as lakes or dams, so Royal Life Saving suggests parents create a Child Safe Play Area. Royal Life Saving has also developed the Keep Watch @ The Farm program which provides information and useful resources to improve parent/carer awareness of drowning prevention strategies on farms. Q. What is a Child Safe Play Area? A. A Child Safe Play Area is a carefully planned, designated location which
Keep Watch @ The Farm is aimed at preventing children under 5 years of age from drowning by getting parents and carers to undertake four
simple actions: Supervise Ensure that when your child is in, on, or around water they are within arms’ reach and have your undivided attention at all times. This may include holding their hand when walking near a dam. Restrict Access Ensure that where possible there is a barrier between your child and the water. This may be an effective and well maintained pool fence or a child safe play area on a farm. Water Awareness Enrol your child in a water familiarisation class such as Royal Life Saving’s Swim and Survive Wonder Program. When new people arrive at your farm, ensure that they are made aware of the hazards and risks the farm environment may pose to children. Resuscitate Be prepared to respond in an emergency. Enrol in a resuscitation course and update your skills annually. If required, any response is better than nothing. Just push and blow, and as soon as possible call ‘000’.
DRUG AND ALCOHOL AWARENESS
Learn more about Alcohol Awareness
Talking to your kids aged 15-17 For some parents, talking to your teenager about alcohol and setting rules and boundaries to keep them safe, can be daunting. Many parents feel that it’s their responsibility to create strategies and educate their children on when, where and how to drink. However some parents can struggle with how to provide this guidance. It’s vital that parents keep the lines of communication open through the teen years. Make sure you have frank discussions about alcohol. • Debunk some of the popular and unhelpful myths – e.g. not every parent provides their child with alcohol. • Be prepared. Teenagers will raise the topic of alcohol if and when they’re ready to talk. Be ready to have the conversation and address their queries – that’s when they’re most open to hear your advice. Remember to plan what you want to say to them ahead of time. • Be aware of your own role modelling when it comes to alcohol. Parents play a crucial role in shaping their children’s attitude and behaviours towards alcohol by being role models for their kids. Tips for the talk • Pick your time. The car can be a great place and time for constructive conversations – they’re a captive audience and there’s also the benefit that they don’t have to be facing you. • Be consistent in your own behaviour. It’s easier for teens to model their behaviour on positive role models when it’s consistent. • Draw the line between adult activities and child activities. Don’t be afraid to let your child know that some things aren’t appropriate for teens. If you believe that drinking alcohol is only something that adults do, make sure they hear your views on the matter. • Challenge unfounded statements. If your child tells you that ‘everyone else drinks’, ask them to provide proof. • Challenge their beliefs. Be aware that teenagers are likely to want to drink alcohol believing it will help them fit in. They need to know they can fit in without drinking. • Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Your GP or local health professional is available for you and your teen. Binge drinking – putting things in perspective Binge drinking is not just about the number of drinks you have – it’s about drinking with the specific intention of ‘getting drunk’. Binge drinking receives a great deal of media attention and can lead to shaping teens beliefs that
this is the norm. There’s no denying that there are many young people who drink in risky ways, but there are many teenagers who are trying their best to keep themselves and their friends as safe as possible. Remember: kids absorb your drinking. Australian research shows that in 2011 around 63% of 17 year olds were not considered to be current drinkers, so this finding may challenge the belief that everybody is doing it. However of those 17 year olds who were considered to be current drinkers, around 19% drank in a risky way (more than 4 drinks) at least once in the week before they were surveyed. That means there’s only a minority of kids who are binge drinking – but they’re still obvious and influential. Some young people ‘preload’ to save money – quickly drinking large amounts of alcohol at home before heading out. Often they’re already intoxicated before they walk out the front door. By the time they get to where they’re going their judgement is clouded, causing them to continue drinking more than they intended to, so they don’t save money at all. If your teen really believes getting drunk every weekend is normal, there could be other factors at play. Perhaps there are other influences in their lives (peers, older siblings, relatives) or problems that you’re unaware of. Don’t be afraid to ask the tough questions. Talking to your kids aged 9-14 Kids are interested in what’s going on around them and seeing how their role models use alcohol is part of this. So it’s important to start talking to your kids about alcohol. And the right time to start is right now. Research shows that parents have the greatest impact on shaping their children’s attitude to alcohol and future drinking behaviour. The role alcohol plays in your life will have an effect on them too. They might ask you about alcohol and what it’s like to drink it. Always answer honestly. • Talk to your child about alcohol and the importance of drinking in moderation. Explain what happens to the body when you drink too young and too much. • Set rules – the most important one being not to drink. Be sure to discuss this rule and agree on the consequences if not followed. • Teach them to say ‘no’ and that not everyone drinks. • Ask them how they feel about you drinking alcohol. What attitudes have they already formed about it? It will help you reflect on your own drinking behaviours and open up the lines of communication.
DRUG AND ALCHOHOL DRUGAWARENESS AWARENESS
Don’t turn a foolie this Schoolies Schoolies. It’s a little word for a big week. It’s the holiday Year 12s all over Australia have been waiting for. But above all, it’s the chance to celebrate the end of school…finally. Hold up. Before you race out there, make sure you’re prepared. Not knowing the risks or what to do in an emergency can turn things ugly, fast. Wherever you’re planning on spending schoolies, it’s always good to have a plan. Around alcohol people can change and the risks are high. So here are a few tips for a fun, safe Schoolies Week: • Let your parents know where you’re staying and who you’re going with. • Keep in contact with your parents throughout the week – so they know you’re safe (they’re less likely to hassle you then too) • Register as a school leaver with the local council (or schoolies organisation) in the area you’re visiting. • Always have your phone on you (and charged!) • Put your ‘in case of emergency number’ (ICE) in your phone. • In an emergency call 000. • Keep money aside for emergencies. • Eat before you drink – preferably carbohydrate-rich food such as rice, bread, pasta, pizza etc. It’ll help slow the rate your body absorbs alcohol. • Be extra cautious with drinks. Avoid drinks with high alcohol content and beware of drink spiking – don’t let your drink out of your sight. • Pace your alcohol intake and hydrate with non-alcoholic drinks like water. • Stay with friends and keep an eye out for one another. • Don’t drink drive or get into a car with anyone who’s been drinking. • Avoid risky situations such as swimming after drinking or getting into arguments and fights.
TOP 10 TIPS FOR PARENTS Here are 10 ways to encourage your kids to talk about drugs with you.
Be an active part of their lives Make sure you set aside time to spend with your kids. Take an interest in their interests and establish a routine for doing things with them. Spending time as a family is important, like eating together every day. When they go out, don’t be afraid to ask where they’re going or who they’ll be with.
Listen to your kids Showing that you’re prepared and willing to listen will help your kids feel more comfortable about listening to you. During a conversation try not to interrupt them or react in a way that will stop whatever you’re discussing. Encourage them to feel comfortable about telling you their problems, and ask for their input on family decisions to show that you value their opinions.
Be a role model When it comes to drugs there’s no such thing as ‘do as I say, not as I do’. If you take drugs yourself you can’t expect your kids to take your advice. It’s important not to underestimate the influence your behaviour has on them, particularly when it comes to alcohol or tobacco, or misuse of medications.
Be honest with them It’s natural that you won’t necessarily know everything about drugs. So while it’s important to be informed, you shouldn’t pretend to have answers to every question. Be prepared to say ‘I don’t know but I’ll find out for you’. If you’re honest and clear about where you stand, your kids will find it easier to be honest with you.
Pick your moment Make sure you pick the right time to discuss drugs with your kids, by looking for natural opportunities as they arise. This might be when you’re all watching TV, or when they’re talking about someone at their school or in their friendship group.
Be calm When it comes to talking about drugs, being calm and rational is important, as well as not overreacting. Make sure not to ridicule or lecture, as this could make future discussions about drugs more difficult and make your kids more resistant to talking about them at all.
Avoid conflict It is difficult to solve a problem where there’s a conflict. Try to see their point of view while encouraging them to understand yours. If a confrontation does develop, stop the conversation and come back to it when you’re both calmer.
Keep talking Once you’ve had a discussion about drugs it’s important to have another. Start talking to your kids about drugs early, and be willing to talk to your kids about the issue at any time.
Set clear boundaries Generally kids expect and appreciate some ground rules. By actively involving them in setting the rules you can encourage them to take more responsibility for sticking to them. Once you’ve decided on these rules, enforce them, and let your kids know the consequences of breaking them. Discuss and agree to ways your kids will act if they find themselves in situations where drugs are present. For example, let them know that you’ll always collect them if they need you to, whatever the hour. However, make it absolutely clear that you would rather they didn’t put themselves in a situation where they are likely to be exposed to drugs in the first place.
Focus on positives Be sure to reward your kids’ good behaviour and emphasise the things they do well. Encourage them to feel good about themselves and let them know that they deserve respect and should also respect themselves.
For more information visit “drinkwise.org.au www.childsafetyhub.com.au
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There is no higher priority than protecting our children and NSW Police Legacy continues their commitment to child safety. The greatest tool...
Published on Sep 30, 2020
There is no higher priority than protecting our children and NSW Police Legacy continues their commitment to child safety. The greatest tool...