Written by Chris Boyle, firstname.lastname@example.org Friday, 02 May 2014 00:00
These days, every parent welcomes anything that can give them a little extra peace of mind when it comes to the safety of their children. Recently at the Hicksville Public Library, Nassau County provided parents with just that in the form of its acclaimed KidPix initiative, a free program that provides parents with a detailed identification card containing important information about their child to be used in the event of an emergency.
Senator Jack Martins said that KidPix offers a vital conduit of information between parents and authorities in the event a child is hurt or goes missing. He said in such instances having access to information can save lives.
“We’ve been doing this now for at least eight months or so in various communities,” he said. “People seem to appreciate the need for identification. Any piece of information you can give that people that allow first responders to respond more accurately in terms of being able to locate them or provide medical attention and the care that they need is a home run.”
Amanda Laikin, an assistant to Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano, spoke about the exact process that went into creating and manufacturing a KidPix card, which takes but a few minutes from beginning to end.
“We take a picture of the child, fill out their name, address, date of birth, eye color, hair color, and their gender,” she said. “Then we take a scan of their fingerprint for the back of the card, and it all prints out on one card for the parents to take home in case of an emergency. If anything happens, they can show the card to law enforcement so they will have all the information they need, all there on one card.”
“I think that KidPix is a very useful thing, and I’m glad that the county has taken the initiative and allowed us to partner with them,” Martins said. “Turnout has been great today. People have been steadily coming in since we opened earlier this afternoon. During the course of four hours we’ll typically get as many as 60, 70, sometimes even as high as 100 kids, which is pretty neat.”
Rob Wagner of Hicksville brought his daughter Sadie to have her I.D. made at the behest of his wife. He said that KidPix is a great program and that he appreciated the county making it available.
“I think it’s just a good thing for her to have,” he said. “God forbid, if she were to ever get separated from my wife and I, we’ll have the information on-hand to give to the authorities to help identify her and get her home safe and as fast as possible.”
Luis Zelaya attended the KidPix event at the Hicksville Library with his mother, Zulma. He said that she was very insistent that they go together and get the card, and he admitted that he was looking forward to getting it for reasons other than just safety.
“My mom thinks it’s important to have these cards in case a stranger tries to kidnap me or something, she can just go to the police and give them the card so they can find me,” he said. “I think the cards are really a good idea, too. It’ll make me feel way more grown-up to have an I.D. card of my very own, especially when I show it off to all my friends.”
Christina Frantzen of Bethpage attended the KidPix event with her children, Makeyla, Kylie, and Jaclyn, and said that having I.D. cards for all three of her daughters would certainly help her sleep easier at night.
“I think that having some form of identification for your children is a good idea,” Frantzen said. “It’s all about safety. If anything happens, we’ll have something with their picture and vital information. It’s just piece of mind, and it’s nice of the county to make KidPix available for people.”