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  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by FearlessLeader View Post
    I personally probably wouldn't let my kids go for that long alone to the park, but it wouldn't particularly cause me alarm if I heard of someone else's kid doing it. People used to do it all the time, and it's no more dangerous these days (and that's a fact)- society's perceptions have just changed.
    I think that in terms of the guidelines around kids being unattended that it would all be part of a much bigger picture, not just that kids are off playing on their own.
    The problem, for me, is the roads and lack of safe crossing.

    These are not my kids, and I don't know them all that well. But it doesn't sit right with me, and as a mandatory reporter, I told my superior... it was told to me at work and I have an obligation.
    I told my superior, and there are other things with these kids too that have caused concern, so I have done my part.

    ETA: people used to do it all the time, yes. There is plenty of other stuff people used to do all the time, that is not okay now too though.

  2. #12
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    Geez, I'm a mandatory reporter and wasn't aware I had to report for this. Where I work, we have loads of kids walking home from school alone. Some as young as 6/7.

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    As PP have said, there is legally no specific age.
    So for eg in your update, if the kids went to the park and were happy and looked after themselves, crossed the roads safely and came home, that would likely be ok.
    But if they got distressed at the park, needed help, got lost, ran across roads etc, then that would likely be an offence.

    IMO though, if they were my kids, I would NOT be ok with that. They are far too young to be travelling such a distance on their own, and for 5 hours. But that is just my opinion.

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    my friend used to get left home alone at age 9 if she was sick as both her parents worked and couldn't get time off work. this is going back 25 years of course so highly probable things have changed since then. I remember being shocked hearing about it as a 10 year old and my parents being shocked too. looking back now as an adult, I feel that's really too young. anything could happen.

    I don't know how old is "old enough" but I guess part of it comes down to the child's/children's maturity and part of it depends on what he situation is.

  6. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by DT75 View Post
    The problem, for me, is the roads and lack of safe crossing.

    These are not my kids, and I don't know them all that well. But it doesn't sit right with me, and as a mandatory reporter, I told my superior... it was told to me at work and I have an obligation.
    I told my superior, and there are other things with these kids too that have caused concern, so I have done my part.

    ETA: people used to do it all the time, yes. There is plenty of other stuff people used to do all the time, that is not okay now too though.
    Isn't your obligation as a mandatory reporter to make the phone call/report online? Just confused how telling your superior fits in?

    Fwiw as a reporter myself I would be very close to reporting that, depending on a couple of other details.

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    Also, it is true that there is no specific age. This might help though:

    ImageUploadedByThe Bub Hub1441625560.560735.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by harvs View Post
    Isn't your obligation as a mandatory reporter to make the phone call/report online? Just confused how telling your superior fits in?

    Fwiw as a reporter myself I would be very close to reporting that, depending on a couple of other details.
    I asked, and she said no.
    ETA: I also don't know the other details, and wasn't sure that it was actually illegal.

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    I think it is the "other" details in the OPs case that, for me, would determine if there is a case for reporting. Firstly - why are the kids going to a park so far away for so long? Is it because they are active kids who join their friends there to play for the afternoon or is it because they have nowhere else to go or don't want to be at home?. Are they safe and capable of getting to the park? Do their parents know where they are? Do the children have a reasonable understanding of what to do if something goes wrong?
    I don't know. .I guess I'm reasonably "free range" in my parenting style. My 9yo would happily spend several hours at the local park with his mates from the area, (playing games, kicking a footy, building cubbies etc good clean boy fun) although very busy roads is not an issue for us. I know where he is and he knows where I am and we have pretty clear guidelines. I would be devastated if it was reported to authorities and he would be devastated to have to stay within the confines of our yard..it would be a real shame.
    As I said, I would have to get a "vibe" about this situation and the stuff going on on the periphery fir it to ring big alarm bells. 7 is too young in my opinion. .but the 10yo might be very responsible. .who knows?

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    I don't know what age but I certainly wouldn't let my kids out alone.

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    At 9 my friend and I were riding our bikes around our suburb. We checked in at home often though. By 10 we definitely hung out at the park with a bunch of mates. Albeit, the park was not far from our houses at all. My mum was pretty free range. I'm grateful for it and trying to follow in her footsteps (to a degree - I am highly anxious 😑). Eg - when we go camping we let the kids (aged 6-11) disappear at the camp ground (with specific boundaries) for extended periods. Obviously we check up on them.

    So I guess my answer is 9/10 for playing at a park, as long as they are being checked on periodically or checking in periodically.


 

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