Kids getting ‘citations’

Published 10:41 pm Thursday, August 11, 2011

If your children are careful, they might get a citation from Suffolk sheriff’s deputies.

As part of the Subway Playin’ Safe program, deputies who observe children playing safely — looking both ways before they cross the street or wearing a helmet while riding a bicycle, for example — will give the children “citations” that earn them free sandwiches at local Subway restaurants.

“As franchisees, we’re local in the communities and we have kids, just like everybody else,” said Mitesh Raval, board chair for Tidewater-area Subway franchisees.

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“We want to get the safety message out to everyone,” Raval said. “But we thought we wanted to get started with local children, urging them to be safe in the activities they do every day.”

Lt. James Darden with the Suffolk Sheriff’s Office said the program helps develop positive relationships between law enforcement and young people.

“It seems to be a good program,” said Darden, who added deputies have already been giving out cards. “When you see a kid doing something well, you reward them.”

Raval added the program has gotten the attention of local children.

“It’s a really popular thing for them,” he said. “My daughter, she knows that when you do something good, you get a reward. That’s pretty much it in a nutshell.”