Speak Up, Be Safe:

Frequently Asked Questions


1.  What do children learn in the program?


The goal of Speak Up, Be Safe is to give children the skills and language necessary to help adults protect them from abuse. There are five rules that each child will learn in the program:

 (1) It's MY body! -- Children learn that they are special and that they have the right to be safe. The learn that their body is a part of who they are and that they have the right to protect it.

 (2) Ask an adult if I am safe. -- Children learn that it is the job of adults to keep them safe. Children learn that if they aren't sure if a situation is safe or not they should ask a safe adult to help them make that decision. 

 (3) I have choices. -- Children learn they have choices in unsafe situations with the acronym RESIST: Run, Escape, Scream, Ignore, Stay Away, and Tell Someone.

(4) Tell someone. -- Children learn that if another person harms or abuses them in some way they need to tell a safe adult.  In the program, children are encouraged to have more than one safe adult and to keep telling until someone does something to keep them safe.

(5) It is NEVER my fault! -- Children are often tricked into abuse; however, the Speak Up, Be Safe program teaches children that abuse is never the child's fault.

2. I'm worried about my child learning about "sex."   

The Speak Up, Be Safe program is a research based, comprehensive primary prevention education curriculum used to equip children with the skills they need to play a significant role in the prevention or interruption of physical, emotional, and sexual abuse. As such, children are provided with proper terminology to address each of those types of abuse. The program focuses on building self-esteem and safety skills within the child, to include addressing today’s societal risks children encounter everyday such as internet and cell phone safety. The program is NOT a sex education class.

3. Do children only learn about "sexual" abuse in this program?

No! During the program, children learn about the following forms of abuse:

(1) Physical abuse  (examples include hitting, punching, leaving marks, scratches, or bruises)
(2) Verbal/emotional abuse  (also includes bullying)
(3) Neglect  (not having the proper food, clothing, shelter, and medical care)
(4) Sexual abuse  (which can occur with or without touch) 

Grades 3-6 are introduced to internet and cell phone safety, including cyber bullying. 

4. How is Speak Up, Be Safe different from Good Touch - Bad Touch?

Speak Up, Be Safe evolved from "Good Touch - Bad Touch" after some years of research. The Speak Up, Be Safe program no longer qualifies touches as "good" or "bad" because doing so can cause confusion. The program has also been modified to include internet and cell phone safety as well as cyber bullying, things that have become a pervasive part of our society in the last 20 years. Speak Up, Be Safe continues to offer the program in a manner that best meets the developmental abilities of each age group.

5. Why should I (as a parent/guardian) allow my child to participate in the program?

According to statistics, 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused before they reach the age of 18, and 5 children die every day from abuse. Most children are NOT abused by a stranger, but someone they know or love. Child abuse can happen anywhere at any time, regardless of the presence of a guardian or caretaker. Speak Up, Be Safe teaches that every child has the right to be safe, and provides children with safety rules that equip them to play a role in interrupting potential abuse. Child Help has the recent statistics on the prevalence of child abuse in America.

For more information, visit http://www.childhelp.org/pages/statistics.