More Young Children With Cell Phones

By: Leonard Horton Email
By: Leonard Horton Email

A lot of children found a cell phone in their stocking this Christmas.

With more news surfacing about kidnappings and sexual predators in our neighborhoods, parents say a cell phone is the newest line of defense for their children.

Parent Simone Johnson says it was not a hard decision to buy a cell phone for her 6th grade son, Trevor. His brother Tyler also has a cell phone on the way.

"We decided to get him a cell phone so we could keep in touch with him when he goes to school and when he is walking home in the afternoons," said parent Simone Johnson.

"I call my mom when I'm coming home from school and I call my grandma if I want to walk to her house," said Trevor Johnson, a student at Swift Creek Elementary in Tallahassee.

"She's always worried. Like, if someone kidnapped me I wouldn't be able to call her or tell her anything," said Tyler Johnson, a student at Buck Lake Elementary.

Parents say incidents like the attempted kidnapping at Reudiger Elementary in November is just one example of why they are taking extra steps to secure their child's safety in the new year.

A recent marketing survey released by the Yankee Group reports some 5.3 million children between ages 8 and 12 are wireless users.

A lot of the cell phones now come with a GPS tracking system and emergency hot buttons, but not all parents think giving a young child a cell phone is the best solution.

"If you teach your kids how to defend themselves, and not to be a victim, they are going to be able to protect themselves and make sure they are always with other people and with an adult," said parent Tina Rester, a mother of a 12-year-old who says she is concerned about a child that age handling the responsibility of a cell phone.

Rester says she will not get her daughter a cell phone until she is 16.

An associate with Best Buy in Tallahassee says in December alone some 60 cell phones were sold just for children.


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