Babysitter Safety Tips

Prepare Your Sitter for Safety and for Emergencies

Parents know that having children is one of the most time consuming and rewarding responsibilities they can have. That being said, they also want to have time to themselves every once in a while. Hiring a Babysitter is the best way for parents to have a night out on their own without having to worry about the safety of their children. Babysitters are just like temporary parents, and that’s why it is essential that they are properly educated about the kids in their custody as well as the house in which they are sitting.

Safety Check First

Chances are that a babysitter won’t be bringing cabinet locks and their own fire extinguisher to your home. There are several things to consider when it comes to the things that children can come into contact inside the household, some of which can do serious harm. Days before the sitter even arrives, prepare the house to minimize the possibility for child injuries.
  • Baby-proofing. Younger children are both curious and adventurous. When it comes to children aged between one and ten years old, it is imperative that parents take the time to lock up items that can injure their kids. Baby proofing the house gives parents the peace of mind in knowing that their children are safer. There are online sites that offer essential items such as cabinet locks and tie-downs for TVs and bookshelves to prevent anything from falling over and on top of a child.
  • Household hazards. Likely, a newly hired babysitter isn’t going to be familiar with the household. By taking the time to provide a brief tour of the house, sitters will know exactly what to do in the case of an unexpected emergency. Knowing where to find the fire extinguisher, for example, makes all the difference in life or death scenarios. If there is a family escape plan for a fire (which is recommended by the fire department), sitters should also be informed so that they can take a leadership position and get the kids to safety.

Babysitter Information Sheet and Emergency Contact Info

Possibly the most important tool to provide the babysitter is a detailed information sheet that gives the sitter everything he or she needs to know while a child is in their custody. This information sheet should be broken down into three sections.

Contact Information

Clear information should be kept in a visible and handy spot for the sitter so that if an emergency arises, the sitter will quickly know who to contact.
  1.  Names. The names of the family hiring a sitter should include those of the child or children, including birth dates. Also, the names of the parents and family doctor. It would also be helpful to include any names of pets. To keep away unknown visitors, also provide names of anyone that may be coming to the house for any reason.
  2. Addresses. If the sitter needs to contact emergency personnel, provide the address of the house and the address or addresses of where the parents will be while away from their children.
  3. Phone numbers. Parents should provide their own cell phone numbers and any other home numbers if they have landlines. Emergency phone numbers including the poison control center, family doctor, utilities such as water and power, nearby hospitals, emergency rooms, and anything else that may be important for a sitter to have in the event of an emergency should also be provided.

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