The District Attorney’s office began putting up stickers in storefront windows in Brooklyn today, August 16, to let children know that these places are safe spots where they can go in case of an emergency.
This Safe Stop program was launched following the kidnapping and murder of 8-year-old Leiby Kletzky, from Borough Park, who got lost trying to meet up with his mother after leaving day camp in mid-July. His kidnapper, Levi Aron, snatched him and took him back to his apartment, where he tragically killed him.
Business owners and employees underwent voluntary background checks to ensure their place of business could be considered a safe spot for Brooklyn kids. They were then given Safe Haven decals to stick on their storefront windows to let children know it was a safe place for them to stop in, in case they had an emergency of some sorts.
“It’s a good thing to do, it’s a good thing for the community, and it’s a good step for Brooklyn” says John Miniaci the owner of Johnny’s Pizza, which is now considered a safe haven in Sunset Park.
Although the program has been in the works for years, Leiby’s death led the District Attorney Charles Hynes to fast-forward the project.
“The message to children in New York is that if you’re lost, or if you feel like you’re in trouble, or if you feel like there might be some danger, or if you’re injured, just look look for the yellow Safe Haven sticker,” City Councilman David G. Greenfield said on July 20. What do you think of this program?