Community Wellness Chairperson Ann Burchett talked to KMZU’s Kristie Cross about the Family Safety Fair in Chillicothe.

Ann Burchett

Today there is a Family Safety Fair going on in Chillicothe. For some, there may be opinions of “It’ll never happen to my family or me,” or “Do I really need this?” The Community Wellness Committee is teaming up with Chillicothe Friendship Lodge #89 to offer this Safety Fair. It all takes place at the Grand River YMCA from 10:00 a.m. -2:00 p.m.

Community Wellness Committee Chairperson Ann Burchett says everyone in surrounding areas is welcome to attend and it’s not just limited to residents in Chillicothe. Several topics that will be covered at this fair are distracted driving, electric shock, farm safety, internet safety, firearm safety and more. There will be displays and booths set up on these various subjects.

One thing parents of children ages 0-21 should consider is the MoCHIP child identification program. MoCHIP is a compilation of information such as fingerprints, DNA, dental impressions, height/weight, photos and other pertinent details. It’s all put on a mini CD that is compatible with the Amber Alert system. None of the child’s information is ever stored in a database that way it can never be compromised. The MoCHIP program is free and made possible by the Missouri Masons and brought to the community by the local Masonic Lodge. It is recommended the data CD’s are regularly updated so the most current information about your child is on the CD.

One thing parents can do ahead of time if they would like to attend the Family Safety Fair and participate in the MoCHIP program is to go online to to fill out information forms and permission slips.

Statistically, girls and boys ages 11-21 are the most susceptible to become missing. It only takes about 15 minutes to process a child through the MoCHIP program and once it’s done, the parent is armed with a pre-printed envelope which instructs authorities in the event of an emergency. Within minutes, the data CD can be loaded directly into a patrol car’s computer and entered into the Amber Alert system. In August 2014 the 200,000th child was identified through the program.

Privacy and safety of children is taken very seriously by the MoCHIP program and once all information is put on the data CDs, it’s permanently erased from the database using state of the art software. Parents should also bring a photo ID to claim their child’s packet.

If you have any questions you can call Ann Burchett at 660-646-5506 or Eric Turner at 660-646-6688.