For Immediate Release
October 3, 2001

Janette Smith
Director, Healthy Lifestyles
Peel Health
Region of Peel
905-791-7800, Ext. 2617

Peel Health Offers Tips for Children Home Alone After School

(Brampton) - For a growing number of children in Peel and across Canada, being "home alone" at lunchtime or after school is a fact of life.

Laws across Canada vary, but 10 years is generally the age at which children can legally be left on their own for short periods of time. However, parents are legally responsible for making appropriate arrangements for the care of their children up to 16 years.

"Children vary in their maturity and responsibility at all ages. It is the parents' responsibility to carefully assess the child's ability to make good decisions about his or her safety and then make appropriate arrangements based on that knowledge," says Judi Edwards, Director of Services for Peel Children's Aid.

"Parents often have to make hard decisions about their child's care between the end of the school day and the end of the work day," says Dr. David McKeown, Medical Officer of Health for the Region of Peel. "Peel Health encourages all parents to develop strong lines of communication with their children, and teach them how to be both safe and responsible if they must stay alone."

Peel Health offers four tips to help parents prepare their children for those times when they are home alone:

1. Teach your children how to be safe: Make sure they know:

2. Develop and nurture good parent/child communication:

3. Teach your child how to be responsible:

4. Seek alternatives to your child being home alone:

For more information, contact Health Line Peel at 905-799-7700.

Communication Services, 10 Peel Centre Dr., Brampton, ON L6T 4B9
Phone: 905-791-7800, Fax: 905-791-0595 , e-mail
Web site:

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