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Other Important Safety Issues

How to Report Child Pornography and Other Child Abuse:

Responding to Child Abuse (sexual)

School Image Databases

Parents and Kids: How Much Privacy?

How to Teach Young People Safe Online Practices

Discussion Questions and Answers for Parents (from Dateline NBC's Website)

Summer Safety

General Safety Tips:

Books about Safety and Useful Links

Sexual Harassment—what is it and how do you report it?

Sexual Assault—what is it, and where do you go to get help?

Statutory Rape—what is it and what are the ages of consent?


How to Report Child Pornography and Other Child Abuse:

Child pornography is a devastating practice and you can help stop it. If someone you know is using child pornography, you can take action in one the following ways:

According to the Attorney General's office in Utah

  • Child pornography is considered a form of abuse
  • State law actually requires citizens aware of such crimes to contact authorities. 
  • Possession and distribution of child pornography is illegal in all 50 states.

It is important to realize that children are harmed not only by being the subjects of pornography, but also by being exposed to it. Sexual predators often prime their victims online by sending them child pornographic images to make them think that these behaviors are acceptable. These victimized children often become the subjects of pornography. Help stop this self-propagating crime by reporting it.   Report Abuse Online 

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Responding to Child Abuse (sexual)

When a child tells an adult that he or she has been sexually abused, the adult may feel uncomfortable and may not know what to say or do. The following guidelines should be used when responding to children who say they have been sexually abused:  click here

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School Image Databases

While investigating ways to increase online safety awareness, we discovered that hundreds of elementary schools are unknowingly exposing your children to Internet pornography and other harmful images.

More and more of our kids are using the Internet while at school for papers and other research. As they search for pictures, students often use the image search feature on popular search engines. Many schools actually recommend specific databases as appropriate for student use.

Hundreds of school homepages link directly to PicSearch.com—a searchable image database with a filter that does not block pornographic images. A quick click on one of the "Most Popular Searches" on Picsearch.com brings up multiple pages of Denise Richards in provocative poses and revealing clothing. Other searches of famous people return nude pictures and additional pornography. Why is the most popular search, on a search engine meant for children, a search for a former Playboy cover girl?

Other common image search engines: Google, Yahoo, MSN, and AltaVista, have similar problems; each of the major searchable databases brought back pornographic results. It is not enough to simply avoid searching for famous people or other searches that may bring back pornography; all searches can bring back pornographic images despite what words are used in the search. Some of the most common corporate names and other seemingly mundane words return shocking images in each of the search engines. Yet children are encouraged and even required by teachers to enter these databases and gather images to enhance school projects. The Internet issues you have discussed with your children are disregarded during school hours.

We encourage you as parents to browse school websites with your families. If the school links to Picsearch.com or any other image search, we urge you to call the school principal and request that the link be taken down immediately. Our investigators have found that any image search can bring back unexpected search results because it is not yet possible to filter by image only.

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Parents and kids:  How Much Privacy?

  • Should you monitor your kids internet usage?
  • Should you read their emails and chats?
  • Here is what we are hearing today at Netfamilynews.org   

"Children should be told up front that their communications will be monitored on an ongoing basis. This is a condition of their use of the Internet. If they don't like it, they can find something else to do with their time. Knowing that their parents are involved and aware of what they are doing and saying online is like supervision in other areas of a child's life. It not only puts parents in a position to catch problems before they become serious or fatal, it encourages children to behave safely and appropriately online, preventing problems from occurring in the first place.... Children don't need privacy, they need parenting."  Rest of article

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How to Teach Young People Safe Online Practices 

How to Teach Young People Safe Online Practices is a guide designed by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) to provide online safety and security tips for educators, parents, and guardians. This guide offers educators tips to use when talking to their students about practicing safe online behavior and it offers parents and guardians tips for helping children ages 12-17 navigate the online social scene safely.

The Geek Squad has created a page to help parents become computer savvy to help protect children from harmful content on the Internet. Some helpful features include the following definitions of commonly used “IM speak.”

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Discussion Questions and Answers for Parents (from Dateline NBC's Website)

Dateline NBC had been airing their very popular show How to Catch a Predator which is drawing nationwide attention to the already huge problem of online safety for kids.  Take a look at their website and help protect your kids from the dangers of the internet.

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Summer Safety

Summertime means that children are moving into the outdoors as they visit swimming pools, play in parks, and go on bike rides. Places like swimming pools and parks can be enticing to potential sexual predators: make sure your children are safe. 

Summer Safety Quiz for Kids

Take this quiz to see if you are ready to have a safe and fun summer!

Q.    You need to choose a beach towel to bring with you to the pool. One of them is yellow and has your name written on it in big letters, and the other one is solid red. Which one should you take? 

Yellow with name     Red

Q. You are playing a really fun game with your friends, but it is after dark. What should you do?

Answer

Q. Your friend wants to leave the pool and go home, but you want to stay. Should you stay?

Yes     No

Q. Your mom wants to come with you to the park when you go to play, but you are a big kid, and you want to go alone. Why does she want to come?

Answer 

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  Safety Quiz for Babysitters

When babysitting, it is important to be aware of your own safety as well as the children’s. Take this quiz to test your safety knowledge.

Q.    There is a knock at the door. Should you answer it?

Yes     No

Q. You just answered the phone, and the person on the other line asked for either Mr. or Mrs. Jones. What do you tell the person?

Answer    

Q. Is it polite to ask the parents when you can expect them to return?

Yes     No

Q.Is it best to play with the children, or watch them while they play?

Play with them     Watch them

Q. What should you do if you feel uncomfortable with accepting a ride home from your babysitting job?

Answer    

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General Safety Tips

For Parents:

  • Be available for your child to discuss sensitive issues with you. Let them know that they can come to you with anything.

  • Pay close attention to the behavior of your child. If your child shows a strong resentment or fear of a particular person, it may be a sign of a serious problem. Remember that most child victims feel responsible for what has taken place, and find it hard to discuss their feelings.

  • Be familiar with the people your child is spending time with: friends and their parents, teachers, and others. Offenders often prime their victims with gifts and attention. Getting actively involved in your child’s activities will contribute to your familiarity with these people; it will also strengthen your relationship.

  • Never leave your children alone in public places: the mall, a parking lot, the grocery store, even if only for a few minutes. Establish a “buddy system” for public places, and teach them how to recognize trustworthy adults such as police officers.

  • Do not let your children wear clothing or backpacks with their names on them.

  • Be careful when selecting a babysitter. Using a site like MapSexOffenders.com can help you check their background. Take references from trusted sources. Once you have selected a babysitter, ask your children how they feel about the new sitter and listen carefully to their answers.

Tips for Selecting a Babysitter

As the summer brings your children home, you will have more need of a babysitter. Use the following tips to select a babysitter who is safe for your children.

·        Check out MapSexOffenders.com to make sure the babysitter you are considering is not a registered offender.

·        Check at least two references of the sitter.

·        Ask prospective sitters questions aimed at getting to know their background, experience, and personalities.

·        Carefully observe how the sitter interacts with your children. Come home early once or twice to catch genuine interactions.

·        Ask your children how they feel about the babysitter and listen to the answers.

·        When you have found a sitter, make sure he/she is aware of all emergency contact numbers.

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Tips to help you teach your children to protect themselves:

  • Educate your children on what constitutes appropriate and inappropriate touching. This may be an uncomfortable issue for both of you, but will help your children protect themselves. The following are some suggestions to help you educate your children:
    • Give them correct vocabulary when speaking about their body parts.
    • Emphasize that these body parts are private.
    • Teach your children that it is wrong for anyone to touch these parts.
    • Remind them that if they feel uncomfortable or confused when someone is touching them, the behavior is wrong, and he/she should tell you immediately.
    • Stress the importance of saying “no” to inappropriate or confusing touching by others.
  • Help your children memorize the phone number where they are most likely to reach you. Have them carry change in case they need to call you from a payphone.

  • Establish a family rule that members must check in when arriving or leaving a destination, and follow this rule yourself.

  • Show your older children a map of your neighborhood revealing all the registered sex offenders. Stress the importance of caution on their side when dealing with anyone unfamiliar.

  • You can not always be around as your children grow older. Remind your teenagers of the importance of trusting their own instincts, and that if they feel uncomfortable in any situation, they should leave immediately.

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Tips for everyone: children are not the only victims

  • Trust your instincts. If you feel uncomfortable, you do not need to be polite: leave the situation. Never downplay your discomfort or allow anyone else to downplay it.

  • Be cautious around people who test your personal limits.

  • Know the issues going on in sexual assault. MapSexOffenders.com is working on providing overviews of current events to keep you informed. Discuss these events and other safety issues openly with your children and acquaintances.

  • Make sure to evaluate what you hear on the news, and use the information constructively. The media will sensationalize the terrible stories associated with sexual abuse. Do not let these stories paralyze you with fear. The stories are real and distressing, but they are not the norm, and should not prevent you from leading a happy life.

Safety for Women  

The best way to stop sexual assault is to be prepared for it. Caroline Young has dedicated her website to helping you prepare to protect yourself from attacks. Visit her Tips and Advice for specific methods of preventative measures that you can take.

Oprah Winfrey   
Oprah has posted many stories and safety tips that can help all of us.  

Help Oprah catch the next fugitive sex offender from her predator watch list.                     

Safeguard your home from Pornography

The Internet is a wonderful tool and resource for families, but caution must be exercised in order to protect families and individuals from the potential dangers that are present online.

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Books on Safety 

Looking for some summer reading? Check out Neal Rawls’ Be Alert, Be Aware, Have a Plan: The Complete Guide to Personal Security. Rawls was formerly in charge of worldwide security in his post as the security chief of an international corporation. Rawls also previously served as a police officer. His book provides practical advice to develop your own preventative security measures. Rawls covers everything from traveling safely to using the Internet safely.

Protecting Your Children from Sexual Predators by Leigh Baker works to help you identify various types of predators, how they might approach your child, and how you can stop abuse before it occurs. The book also identifies the stages of abuse, and covers topics such as sibling abuse and Internet safety. The book is straightforward and non-sensational; a source of empowerment for parents.

Useful Links

Link of the Week: StopSexOffenders.com includes a “Child Safety Maneuver” section where you can read about specific situations involving children and how to avert disasters.

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Sexual Harassment

 Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 forbids sexual discrimination; this includes sexual harassment. According to The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s website, sexual advances or requests for favors of a sexual nature are considered sexual harassment when your compliance with or rejection of these behaviors affect your employment, interfere with your work, or create an uncomfortable environment. An important thing to remember about sexual harassment is that the harasser can be anyone—he/she does not have to be a member of the opposite sex. If the behavior makes you feel uncomfortable, it is inappropriate. 

 If you feel that you have been a victim of sexual harassment, take one of the following actions as soon after the incident as possible.

Most charges must be filed within 180 days of the incident, although there may be some exceptions. 

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Sexual Assault 

Sexual Assault is a devastating experience that may have both health and mental repercussions.

The National Victim Assistance Academy Textbook, published by the Office of Justice Programs is an important examination of victimization, which aims to enhance public awareness of victim issues and provide greater resources to victims of crimes. The publication delves into specific crimes, treatment and recourse, and even preventative measures. 

Some chapters of note include,

Specific Justice Systems and Victims' Rights

Domestic Violence

Sexual Assault

Workplace Violence

Stalking

Campus Crime and Victimization

Child Victimization

 

Busting Myths about Sexual Assault 

Myth: Only women and children can be sexually assaulted or raped.

Reality: Although the majority of victims are female or children, men can be assaulted and raped.

Myth: Only gay men assault or are assaulted.

Reality: Any man can be assaulted, regardless of sexual orientation, size, or appearance.

Myth: Getting aroused during an assault means that it was consensual.

Reality: Arousal is a biological reaction to touching or extreme stress. It does not mean that you wanted it. Sexual crimes are most often about power and dominance: sex offenders rarely seek sexual gratification. 

To see more myths about male sexual assault, see the website of the Counseling and Mental Health Center of the University of Texas. The website also deals with sexual assault issues such as What to do if You've JustBeen Sexually Assaulted Checklist of Reactions to Sexual Assault and Unique Issues Faced by Male Survivors

Where to get Help

If you or someone you know are a victim of assault, report it—this will help prevent future crimes against others as well as yourself. The following is a list of organizations that will assist you in bringing offenders to justice.

 

  • Childhelp USA National Child Abuse Hotline     1–800–422–4453

  • Family Violence Prevention Fund/Health Resource Center     1–800–313–1310

  • National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC)     1–800–843–5678

  • National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC)     1–800–394–2255

  • National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS)     1–800–851–3420

  • National Domestic Violence Hotline     1–800–799–7233

  • National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA)     1–800–879–6682

  • National Resource Center on Domestic Violence     1–800–537–2238

  • Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN)     1–800–656–4673

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What is Statutory Rape?

It’s a crime committed when an adult has sexual intercourse with a minor. Who is a minor? Anyone under the age of 18, (or 16; check this list and the current laws in your state.)

What can happen if an adult has sex with a minor? Even if he is your boyfriend? If reported, that person may be arrested, tried in a court of law, and sent to jail. What happens if the sex is consensual and one is a minor? Even if they both agree to have sex, it is still statutory rape.

Sexual Consent Age Laws (USA)

These laws are for sexual consent in the United States only. As with any laws, these are subject to change. If you see two ages in one cell, that is because the age of consent is different for females and for males. 

Although many young people are mature enough to know how to deal with the consequences of sex, some teens are not grown up enough to know that their actions have consequences. Age of consent laws are there to stop young people from being exploited by adults.

USA by State:

Female/Male

Male/Male

Female/Female

Alabama

16

illegal

illegal

Alaska

16

16

16

Arizona

18

illegal

illegal

Arkansas

16

illegal

illegal

California

18

18

18

Colorado

17

17

17

Connecticut

16

no current law

no current law

District of C.

16

no current law

no current law

Delaware

16 (f)18 (m)

no current law

no current law

Florida

18

illegal

illegal

Georgia

16

16

16

Hawaii

16

no current law

no current law

Idaho

16 (f) 18 (m)

illegal

illegal

Illinois

17

17

17

Indiana

16

16

16

Iowa

14(f) 18(m)

no current law

no current law

Kansas

16

illegal

illegal

Kentucky

16

no current law

no current law

Louisiana

17

illegal (under appeal)

illegal (under appeal)

Maine

16

16

16

Maryland

16

no current law

no current law

Massachusetts

16 (f) 18 (m)

illegal

illegal

Michigan

16

illegal

illegal

Minnesota

16

illegal

illegal

Mississippi

16

illegal

illegal

Missouri

17

illegal

illegal

Montana

16 (f) 18 (m)

18

18

Nebraska

17

no current law

no current law

Nevada

16

18

18

New Hampshire

16

18

18

New Jersey

16

16

16

New Mexico

17

16

16

New York

17

17

17

North Carolina

16

illegal

illegal

North Dakota

18

18

18

Ohio

16

no current law

no current law

Oklahoma

16

illegal

illegal

Oregon

18

18

18

Pennsylvania

16

16

16

Rhode Island

16

no current law

no current law

South Carolina

14 (f) 16 (m)

illegal

illegal

South Dakota

16

no current law

no current law

Tennessee

18

no current law

no current law

Texas

17

illegal

illegal

Utah

16 - f 18 (m)

illegal

illegal

Vermont

16

no current law

no current law

Virginia

18

illegal

illegal

Washington

16

16

16

West Virginia

16

no current law

no current law

Wisconsin

18

18

18

Wyoming

16 (f) 18 (m)

no current law

no current law

US Military

16

don't ask, don't tell

don't ask, don't tell

USA Citizen Outside the USA

18

no current law

no current law

(Source: coolnurse.com which we do not endorse and has content about sexual topics that may not be appropriate for children and/or teens.)

 

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Seeking Donations
If you would like to make a donation or help us in this effort please contact us at info@mapsexoffenders.com or you can make a donation online through paypal using the button below.

Or if you prerfer to send a donation by check please make it out to Orbizon and send it to the following address:
                              Orbizon
                              1469 N 1200 W
                              Orem, UT, 84057
        (please write mapsexoffender.com as a note)

Thank you for your help in spreading the word to your friends and family about this public resource.

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(Answers to Quizes)

Yellow with name

Wrong. you should never take anything with your name on it, because if your name is easily visible, it may give a stranger the opportunity he needs to start talking to you.

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Red:

Right! You should never take anything with your name on it, because if your name is easily visible, it may give a stranger the opportunity he needs to start talking to you.

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Answer:

Go home and ask your parents if you can continue playing. Make sure they know exactly where you will be, and make sure you are playing in a well-lit area close to home. If your parents want you to come in, know that it is for your safety.

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Yes:

Wrong. you should not stay if your friend is leaving. Under the buddy system, you should always have at least one friend with you, so go with your friend when he/she is ready to leave.

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No:

Right! Under the buddy system, you should always have at least one friend with you, so it is a good idea to go with your friend when he/she is ready to leave.

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Answer:

Your mom wants to come so that she can make sure that no stranger touches you inappropriately or tries to take you away.

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Yes

Wrong. Do not open the door for anyone you do not know. If the knocker becomes obnoxious or violent, do not hesitate to call 911.

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No

Correct! Never open the door for anyone you do not know. If the knocker becomes obnoxious or violent, do not hesitate to call 911.

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Answer:

Tell them that both parents are busy or simply unable to come to the phone. If the caller begins to ask pushy or threatening questions, hang up and call the police.

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Yes

Correct! It is polite, and even a safety precaution, to ask parents when they should be home and where you can reach them.

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No

Wrong. It is polite, and even a safety precaution, to ask parents when they should be home and where you can reach them.

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Play with them

Correct! Participating with the children will help you be more aware of each child and where he or she is. It will also prevent you from becoming distracted from the children by other things like books and magazines.

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Watch them

Wrong. Participating with the children will help you be more aware of each child and where he or she is. It will also prevent you from becoming distracted from the children by other things like books and magazines.

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Answer:

Trust your instincts. If you feel uncomfortable, call your parents or a friend, and ask them to come pick you up. Never walk home alone.

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