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Holiday Safety: Shop Smart, Shop Safe this Holiday Season

The 2017 holiday season will be a different season for many residents who suffered due to the passing of Hurricane Irma on September 6.  Nevertheless, it will be a time of where strength, compassion and resilience will be displayed.
 
The number one concern this holiday season should be to make sure that whatever it is you buy for a child this year’s holiday season, make sure that it's safe – Shop Smart, Shop Safe. Check the safety information of toys before you purchase them.
 
Every year Collective Prevention Services (CPS), a department within the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (Ministry VSA), as part of its annual calendar of observances, highlights and creates awareness about safe holiday experiences for the entire family.
 
Before purchasing or giving any gift, particularly any intended for a child, double check to make sure the gifts do not pose a hazard or put the child at risk of danger by reading the safety instructions and conditions attached to the gift.
 
Here are some safety tips for holiday season shopping: select toys suitable for a child's age, abilities, skills and interest level; for infants, toddlers, and all children who still mouth objects, avoid toys with small parts, which could pose a fatal choking hazard.
 
Avoid toys that have sharp edges and points, especially for children under age eight; do not purchase electric toys with heating elements for children under age eight; read the labels that give age and safety recommendations and use that information as a guide in your holiday shopping.
 
Magnets — For children under age six, avoid building sets with small magnets. If swallowed, serious injuries and/or death can occur.
 
Small Parts — For children younger than age three, avoid toys with small parts, which can cause choking.
 
Ride-on Toys — Riding toys, skateboards and in-line skates go fast and falls could be deadly. Helmets and safety gear should be sized to fit and worn at all times when operating the aforementioned.  Help instil safety discipline.
 
Projectile Toys — Projectile toys such as air rockets, darts and sling shots are for older children. Improper use of these toys can result in serious eye injuries.
 
Chargers and Adapters — Charging batteries should be supervised by adults. Chargers and adapters can pose thermal burn hazards to children.
 
One of the most important gifts of all to give a child is time spent with you as a parent this holiday season.
 
Shop Smart, Shop Safe.
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