Autism & Safety
Safety concerns associated with Autism...
Michael with his Service dog Kevin
From our own personal experience, we know that raising an extremely active autistic child can certainly wear you down. In 2008 our five-year-old son began bolting from us on a regular basis. One of the most frightening moments in our lives came during an overnight stay in a hotel. Our son managed to manipulate the lock on the hotel room door; he bolted out the door and ran away. Luckily we were able to catch him running through the hotel hallways. Even though he was out of sight for less then a minute, it felt like an eternity. Time just stood still. We knew this behavior needed to be addressed. Prior to this incident our son was placed on a waiting list by Guiding Eyes for the Blind's Heeling Autism program. Heeling Autism provides service dogs to children with autism who tend to bolt from their parents. Service dogs not only provide safety; they also provide much needed companionship, social acceptance and reduce the stress parents experience daily.
These are the safety measurers we decided to utilize: We installed a fence around the perimeter of our home, place a tracking device on our child and installed additional locks and safety devices around our home. In 2010 our son received a gift of hope from Heeling Autism; that gift came in the form of a black Labrador named “Kevin”.
Unfortunately children with Autism do not understand the meaning of fear. They place themselves into dangerous situations throughout their lives. They are unaware of the consequences that may occur. Parents of Autistic children will spend a life time worrying and taking preventive measures trying to protect their children. There are many measures that can be instituted to protect your child. The Hope for Michael Safety Program is designed to provide information on measurers that are available to help secure your child's safety.
The following is a list of suggestive preventive measures that can be utilized to protect an Autistic child.
Safety Measures When Leaving Home
- Place temporary tattoo on Child
- Place ID Tag on Child ie: shoe tag, sneaker sticker, etc.
- Place tracking device on Child
- Upon arriving at a Mall, Amusement Park, Hotel, Etc. notify the security department that your child is Autistic.
- Utilize harness if available for small children
- Secure Child in cart or carriage
- Medical ID bracelets
Safety Measures at Home
- Window guards
- Perimeter fencing
- Window Locks
- Extra door Locks (placed up high on door)
- Toilet lock
- Cabinet latches & locks
- Electrical outlet covers
- Safety gates
- Alarms for windows & doors
- Monitors audio & video
- Apply for service dog
If your child is discovered missing immediately notify your local law enforcement agency (911) and provide them with all pertinent information pertaining to your child and the location where child was discovered missing:
- Child's Name
- Diagnoses (Autism, ADD, ADHD, Etc..)
- Hair Color & Length
- Height & Weight
- Cloths Worn
- Identifiable markings (birthmarks, braces, etc..)
- Last known location (Home, Store, Mall, Park Etc..)
- Child's Favorite Locations: (Pool, Park, Store, Etc...)
- Tracking Device name & ID number
- ID Tags
- Any Medical conditions (Epilepsy, Allergies, Etc..)
Missing at Home
If your child is discovered missing at home immediately check throughout the house. Check all rooms, basements, attics (if assessable) laundry baskets, washer & dryer, garage, sheds, closets, bath tub, shower, underneath the beds and any where you think a child can hide. Notify local law enforcement immediately (911).
Missing at a Store, Mall, Amusement Park, Etc...
Notify store personal, notify security and notify the local Law Enforcement authority (911) immediately.