New Year's Eve Safety Tips for Women

An open letter to my daughters,

It's time to ring in 2011. You've got a big night with friends all planned out. Your're in your best little black dress and ready to head out the door. There's just one more thing that you've got to do. Take a moment and think about safety.

I know. I know. This isn't the time that you want to think about that. After all, you're all set to go out and have fun and I'm sounding like an old mother hen. The truth is that taking a few minutes to review some basic safety precautions can make a good night out even better.

Fireworks in LaFollette
We all know the obvious. Thou shalt not drink and drive is a mantra that we've heard over and over. The thing is that New Year's Eve is prime time for it to happen. Unfortunately, New Year's Eve can be prime time for sexual assault. Nothing is 100% safe but there are a couple of things that may help reduce your risk.

By now, you've already memorized every word on the websites of Realistic Female Self-Defense and National Self-Defense. Thank you for that. It makes me feel much better. There's just a couple of things that I want to remind you about:

1. Trust your instincts.If you feel like something is wrong it probably is. Get out or call for help. Do both if you need to. Make up an excuse if you need to or pretend to be sick. Don't worry about being embarrassed.

2. Keep your drink in your hand. Don't let anyone else (even a friend) watch it. If you need to leave it for any reason don't drink from it when you get back. It only takes a split second for someone to spike it. Make an excuse that it's flat, warm or whatever and order another one.

3. Keep your cell phone fully charged and ready to go. Don't leave home with a low battery.

4. Watch out for thieves and riffraff at public events. One bump and your purse (or contents) may be gone.

5. Keep $20 and the number of a cab company on you. In case your date or friend becomes inebriated you have a way home.

6. Tell someone where you are going and when you plan to be home. This way if you are extremely late we'll know about it and start calling you. (See tip #3.)

There are some other tips from the Keene Police Dept. and Mobile Police Dept. that you may want to read.

Thanks for being safe!