Voluntary stickers could help save lives

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 5, 2003

Parents now have a unique tool to help safeguard their teenagers, thanks to a program sponsored by the Natchez Police Department and dreamed up by a local student.

The police department is offering Guardian Angel curfew stickers &045; a small but recognizable sticker parents can put on the back windshields of their teenagers’ cars.

The stickers were the idea of Natchez teenager Hillaire Long, who says she came up with the idea after friends had been injured and killed in car accidents.

Email newsletter signup

If a police officer sees the sticker on the back of a vehicle after curfew hours &045; after 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and after midnight Fridays and Saturdays &045; the police officer will then pull the car over.

If the person driving the car is under 18, Police Chief Mike Mullins said the person will first be given a warning for violating curfew. If the person is pulled over a second time, he will be taken to the police department and his parents will be called to pick him up. After a third time, an affidavit can be signed for the arrest of the parents, Mullins said.

What’s Long’s goal with this project? &uot;To make it cool again not to drink and drive,&uot; she says in typical &045; or maybe not so typical &045; teenage fashion.

This is a voluntary program, but it’s one we see as being valuable for both parents and their teenagers. Parents can’t keep an eye on their children all the time, and teenagers &045; because they are teenagers &045; aren’t always doing exactly what they should be doing.

This is just another measure of protection for them, and we thank Long, the police department and the businesses who donated money for getting these angels off the ground.