Educate Parents About the Importance of Role-Modeling Safe Behavior

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While 98 percent of parents agree it is important to act as safety role models for their children, the percentage of parents who report actually practicing safe behaviors is often lower.

SAFE KIDS of Georgia and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta educate parents about the importance of role-modeling Safe behavior

In celebration of National SAFE KIDS Week, SAFE KIDS of Georgia and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta are encouraging families about the need for parents to set good examples for children through safe behavior. New research released by the National SAFE KIDS Campaign and Johnson and Johnson finds that parents are not consistently role-modeling safe behavior for their children.

Findings include that while 98 percent of parents agree it is important to act as safety role models for their children, the percentage of parents who report actually practicing safe behaviors is often lower. In addition, children with parents whose actions reinforce their words appear more likely to practice safe behaviors.

"It is as important to 'walk the walk' as it is to 'talk the talk' when it comes to keeping children safe," according to Carol Ball with Children's and SAFE KIDS of Georgia. "Wearing a life jacket, a bike helmet or a seat belt, and crossing streets at crosswalks are easy ways to keep kids safe. Parents can talk about how important it is, but if they aren't doing it themselves their kids aren't likely to either."

Parents do a good job of both stressing the importance of safety belt use with their children and being good examples by wearing safety belts themselves (86 percent say they always do).This may explain near-universal safety belt use among children, 91 percent of children say they always wear a safety belt.

But the research shows that parents are much less successful at being good role models for their children in other key safety areas, such as wearing a bike helmet, wearing a life jacket and safely crossing busy streets.It is important for parents to understand the risks related to these activities as well.

For example:

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* Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury-related death among children ages 1 to 14.

* Bicycles are associated with more childhood injuries than any other consumer product except the automobile.

* Pedestrian injury remains the second leading cause of unintentional injury-related death among children ages 5 to 14.

* For more information or for a copy of Follow the Leader: A National Study of Safety Role Modeling Among Parents and Children, contact SAFE KIDS of Georgia at 404-785-7571 or visit www.safekids.org

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Children's Healthcare of Atlanta,one of the leading pediatric healthcare systems in the country, is a not-for-profit organization that benefits from the generous philanthropic and volunteer support of our community. With 430 licensed beds in two hospitals and more than 450,000 annual patient visits, Children's is nationally recognized for excellence in cancer, cardiac, neonatal, orthopaedic and transplant care, as well as in many other pediatric specialties. Child magazine ranks Children's as one of the top 10 children's hospitals nationwide and Children's is among U.S.News and World Report's top pediatric hospitals. To learn more about Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, visit http://www.choa.org or call 404-250-KIDS.

SAFE KIDS of Georgia is part of the National SAFE KIDS Campaign, the first and only national nonprofit organization dedicated solely to the prevention of unintentional childhood injury - the number one killer of children ages 14 and under. More than 300 state and local SAFE KIDS coalitions in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico make up the Campaign.

Founding Sponsor Johnson and Johnson continues its 17-year partnership with the Campaign. Johnson and Johnson will support National SAFE KIDS Week with a national advertising campaign. It will also distribute safety checklists through retail stores nationwide and send a freestanding insert of coupons to more than 41 million households.

This page is updated on March 15, 2013

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Comments

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