The holidays are upon us - Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, plus New Years Eve. All around the globe our children are getting excited to open presents, spend time with friends and maybe a little romance.
This is also a time where predators look for victims who've had too much to drink out and about, at house parties or fain loneness online. These predators are quick to lend a shoulder to cry on or offer a ride home.
Here is how you and your friends can stay safe over the next few weeks:
1. Travel in pairs
There is a reason why women go to the restroom together, we can catch up, share our thoughts on dresses, drinks and cute boys...it's also very safe.
2. Have a safe word for your parents or friends.
People may offer a ride home or say they are a 'friend' of a friend. If they don't know the safe word, and offer to take some place or to help find your friends, don't go with them.
3. Be aware of your surroundings - it could safe you life or someone else’s. There were two women out for a glass of wine at a bar and noticed a couple that was clearly on a 1st date. When the women got up to go power her nose, he put something in her drink. Luckily, the two women were paying attention to the couple and saw what happened. One went to the restroom and told her not to go back to the table. The other got the restaurant manager and together they called the police and the man was arrested. Paying attention could make the difference.
4. Know your limits - yes some holiday drinks are very tasty, yet they can lead to a hangover or worse. Know how much you can drink, choose a designated driver and safe keeper of the crew. Have fun and be safe. Remember; if a stranger offers you a drink, thank them and refuse it and never leave your drink, walk away and come pick it back up.
5. Have a plan for the end of the night. Uber, Lyft and Via are great options - it's important to travel in pairs here too. Make sure no one is left alone in the car or cab with the driver.
Tis the season to be jolly and to be aware. Trafficking is nightmare some never wake up from
- pay attention and have some fun!