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Issue #35- Circles gets the 411 on 911

Officer C. Suey, Officer J. Staton, and Crime Prevention Specialist Denise Stride visited the Circles site to give tips for safety with strangers and people you know, the proper use of 911, and the proper use of 311.

They wanted us to know that most people are good. That most strangers are good, but not all! That it is best to have a safety plan for how to get help everywhere you go. To understand safety rules for answering the door, being on the phone, and being on the internet. To never give personal information to a stranger or someone who makes us feel uncomfortable.

That it is okay to get help from strangers if an emergency is happening to any one of us when alone, and that there is no one else close by that we know. How to clearly communicate to others that we are having an emergency. Instead of screaming out loud at the top of our lungs (which often gets misconstrued as playing) we should yell out what the emergency is to other people. “Help! There is a stranger trying to get me!”

After teaching us all these valuable safety tips they let us go check the outside and inside of their patrol vehicles, take pictures together, chat, use the lights, play with the speakers, and then gave all of us some really awesome golden badge stickers.

Know when and how to say no

Use polite clear words, eye contact, and assertive body language to say no to unwanted and inappropriate behavior. Continue to say no even when someone uses bribes, hurt feelings, or power to try to pressure you into doing something that makes you feel uncomfortable.

When to use 911

  • When there is a current threat to a person or property
  • Someone is hurt
  • Crime just happened or is about to happen
  • Presence of smoke or fire

When to use 311

When there is no current threat to people or property.

  • Someone who is in custody and is under control. Loud parties, barking dogs, non-serious injuries or illnesses.
  • Non-serious crime that occurred sometime prior.

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