Article by Tracey Valade Photo Credit: Cornwall Community Police Service
On June 29th, 2017, myself and my fellow SEATS for Kids technicians, accompanied by Cornwall Community Police, held a Car Seat Clinic in the parking lot of Canadian Tire. Any vehicle entering the lot who had a child, or an unoccupied child restraint, was asked if they would like an inspection. Most of the parents were happy to have it looked at. Some families came out after hearing about the event online.
This clinic was made possible with help from an MTO Grant provided to help SEATS for Kids reach more outlying areas.
“Cornwall Community Police Service (CCPS) was proud to work together with SEATS for Kids to bring this clinic to Cornwall. It was an important opportunity for parents and caregivers to receive a one-on-one lesson on keeping their children safe while riding in the car. Overall, CCPS is very pleased with the number of parents and caregivers who came out and showed their commitment to keeping children safe while learning some helpful tips.” Quote from Cst. Dupuis of the Cornwall Community Police Service.
We helped correct 27 child restraints at this clinic, all of them having been improper in some way upon arrival. Some common mistakes we saw parents and caregivers making included child being in a restraint not suitable for their age, height, weight or developmental level, the straps being at inappropriate slots, too loose or twisted, as well as not using a top tether for a forward facing seat (what is required by law, restraints secured using incorrectly located UAS clips, use of aftermarket seat protectors, or the restraint was moving more then one inch from side to side. All of these caregivers came for help, and we thank them for such. We know all parents do the best they can to keep their children safe, and sometimes they just need a little help, and that is our goal. SEATS for Kids techs were able to give recommendations and correct errors for all who came out, and even donated 3 seats to families in need of new restraints for their children who had improper restrains on arrival. All the parents we saw came voluntarily, and we thank them for the opportunity to help educate them.
“It helps to have help.”says Lee, who came to the clinic on June 29th. “Like a newborn child, we definitely don’t have all the knowledge we need in the beginning so this workshop helped out. Knowing more today is confidence for tomorrow so this workshop helped me and therefore us, to be confident in the safety of our newborn.” Lee, pictured in the photo with myself and fellow SEATS For Kids tech Sabrina Helmer, and his other half are expecting their first child together soon.
This was the second of our Cornwall clinics for 2017, as a few weeks ago we help another clinic at The Brick, and we are grateful for the opportunity to work with the Market there as well.
The next clinic being held by SEATS for Kids is tomorrow, Saturday, July 8th, in Ottawa. For more information on this or other, including Cornwall, clinics visit the SEATS for Kids website, at www.seatsforkids.com and check the Clinic tab. Cornwall events are listed under other locations in eastern Ontario. If you are not able to attend a clinic and would still like assistance, you can visit the SEATS for Kids Community Discussion forum on Facebook or message Cornwall Car Seats on facebook as well. Cornwall Car Seats in a locally run sector, as we are a group of locally trained techs with CPSAC and all of us also volunteer with SEATS for Kids. We look forward to hearing from you and would love to help!