Keeping Your Child Safe While Shopping - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

11.24.06

Keeping Your Child Safe While Shopping

Its happened to many of us before, you get busy hunting down a bargain in a crowded store or mall, and you turn around to find your child is not where you last saw them. 
   

If you do lose track of your little one while hunting for the panhandle's best bargains this holiday season, some local retailers do have a plan in place. Stores like Wal-mart, Best Buy and Toys R'Us participate in a national plan called Code Adam.
    

It was started in 1981 when 6 year old Adam Walsh was kidnapped from a Florida mall...and is now used in tens of thousands of national stores.
    

David Craig is the Marketing Manager of an Amarillo Wal-Mart. He told Newschannel10's Tina Berasley "We'll page Code Adam, we'll announce the description of the child and ask the person that finds the child to take the child to the service desk where their parent will be waiting...
everybody has a post and all management has walkie-talkies so they can communicate until the child is found".
   

Other stores like Dillards also have a set plan in place, and although details are known only to employees, they tell us it is an important part of their holiday planning. Mike Alvarado is Operations Manager for Dillard's in the Westgate Mall. He said "I'd like to think that people can feel good about being in the store knowing that we are looking out for them and also their loved ones and making sure they are safe in our store".

Chris Taylor was shopping in the mall today with his young son Bradley, and is reassured by the stores safety procedures. He added "It lets whoever's around know that you gotta a little boy running around, don't let anybody out and people will help, that's what people do".
  

Cpl. Jerry Neufeld of the Amarillo Police Department advises parents to always keep a simple strategy in mind. "Close supervision. I can't stress that enough. Make sure somebody is with those children at all times. There's lots of hustle and bustle thats gonna be going on, things that will attract those children's attention. So Mom and Dad need to be aware of that and just keep a close eye on that child and make sure that they don't get too far away".

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