McDonalds/Inspector Detector

Published 12:00 am Sunday, May 6, 2001

team up against child abuse


Features Editor

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Kids can learn a lot from a dog, especially if that dog is the famous "Inspector Detector."

The street-smart and kid-friendly inspector knows ways to "keep kids safe" and he shares his adventures with elementary school children in a fun, colorful way.

Jack Galassini and Linda Hunneyman, creators of "Inspector Detector," visited Troy Elementary School recently to deliver "Inspector Detector Good Secrets/Bad Secrets Coloring Books" to the students in kindergarten through third grades.

The coloring books are a publication of the American Association for Children (AAC) and were donated by The Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Alabama.

"Inspector Detector wears a detector around his neck to let him know if danger is near," Hunneyman said. "In his ‘secrets’ coloring book, the inspector tells the children that there are two kinds of secrets. One is good and one is bad. And, he helps the children to better understand the difference."

A secret about a birthday party is a good secret and it’s okay to keep that kind.

"However," Hunneyman said. "The inspector tells children if an adult hurts them and makes them promise not to tell because it is a ‘secret,’ that’s a bad secret. They don’t need to be afraid to tell a ‘bad’ secret."

Jerry and Janey Stephens, owners of the Troy McDonald’s, presented the coloring books to the school for the second time.

"When we provided the books to the schools in 1996, we were fortunate enough to have a student to report to a teacher that she was a victim of abuse," Janey Stephens said. "When her statements were reported to the authorities, they were able to apprehend the person. Because of this success, we wanted to make the books available again."

Hunneyman said the coloring books are a good way to get the messages across to young children.

"They need to know that it’s okay to tell ‘bad secrets’ and we hope that, knowing this, they will go to someone they trust and confide in them" Hunneyman said.

Galassini said he is always glad to see organizations such as Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Alabama get involved in efforts to curtail child abuse and neglect in whatever form it takes.

"Hopefully, "Inspector Detector" will help prevent many incidence of child abuse," he said.

The "Inspector Detector" coloring books are provided by the AAC, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to the lives of young children.

Safety and other messages are delivered to children by the character, Inspector Detector, which is in print in three different coloring books and more than 100 coloring strips.

The association is headquartered in Montgomery and serves children across the United States.