Sign a Kid and Par­ent Farm Safety Con­tract this Cana­dian Ag Safety Week

The Drumheller Mail - - AROUND TOWN -

A con­tract is an es­sen­tial busi­ness tool. Rental con­tracts, sup­ply man­age­ment agree­ments and pro­duc­tion con­tracts are some types of for­mal agree­ments that a farmer might sign in the daily run­ning of the farm. Even when em­ploy­ing a farm worker, an agree­ment is set up. Rate of pay, ben­e­fits, hours of work and ex­pec­ta­tions are all de­tailed in writ­ing to pro­tect both the em­ployer and the em­ployee. It’s al­ways a good idea for two par­ties to get an agree­ment in writ­ing, and that holds true with par­ents and kids too.

Farm kids are lucky to grow up on a farm. They learn the value of hard work and gain re­spect and love for the land. Of course, along with all of the pos­i­tives of grow­ing up on the farm, farm kids are also ex­posed to haz­ards and risks that can put their safety and health in jeop­ardy. So, in­stead of yelling or lec­tur­ing farm kids about safety, why not work to­gether to write down the safety rules for your farm?

A farm safety con­tract has all sorts of ben­e­fits. Not only does it in­still the im­por­tance of safety, but it gives the child a sense of con­trol over rules that af­fect them di­rectly. Kids, just like adults, need rea­sons for rules. A lecture or a “be­cause I said so” might make sense to a par­ent, but might not make much sense to a kid. Tak­ing the time to ex­plain why some ar­eas on the farm are off lim­its or why there are rules around live­stock can help chil­dren un­der­stand the im­por­tance of safety rules.

Some­times it’s not easy to start talk­ing about sticky sub­jects, how­ever, us­ing a con­tract can open up prob­lem-solv­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tion. Lis­ten­ing is just as im­por­tant as talk­ing when ne­go­ti­at­ing a con­tract. Par­ents may even learn some­thing from their child just by tak­ing the time to dis­cuss and ne­go­ti­ate farm safety rules!

A con­tract is also very mean­ing­ful to the par­ties that sign it. Even to a young per­son, a con­tract is im­por­tant and se­ri­ous. Sign­ing a con­tract with your child shows that you have re­spect for them and the safety rules on your farm.

Lastly, a con­tract teaches kids the im­por­tance of com­mit­ments and obli­ga­tions. A sig­na­ture on a con­tract means they are com­mit­ted to fol­low­ing the rules. It is a re­minder of a prom­ise. This re­minder can help them make bet­ter choices to pro­tect their safety.

For Cana­dian Agri­cul­tural Safety Week, the Cana­dian Agri­cul­tural Safety As­so­ci­a­tion has de­vel­oped a Kid and Par­ent Farm Safety Con­tract that can be found at agsafe­ty­ This con- tract is cus­tom­iz­a­ble to your farm­ing op­er­a­tion. It’s in­tended to be a way to open up the con­ver­sa­tion about haz­ards and risks on your farm. You can print it out, talk about the safety rules im­por­tant for your farm with your child, and sign the con­tract to­gether.

Con­ver­sa­tions are as im­por­tant as tips, rules or con­tracts. A farm safety con­tract is a con­ver­sa­tion starter, and a way for kids to bring up things they may be wor­ried about. It also demon­strates that par­ents are open to talk­ing to their kids about safety. En­cour­ag­ing your child to feel ok about com­ing to you is al­ways a good thing.

For more in­for­ma­tion about Keep­ing Kids Safe and Cana­dian Agri­cul­tural Safety Week, visit agsafe­ty­ To ac­cess the Kid and Par­ent Farm Safety Con­tract, please visit agsafe­ty­week. ca and click on Re­sources. About Cana­dian Agri­cul­tural Safety Week: Cana­dian Agri­cul­tural Safety Week (CASW) is a pub­lic aware­ness cam­paign fo­cus­ing on the im­por­tance of farm safety. CASW takes place ev­ery year dur­ing the third week of March. In 2016, CASW takes place March 13 to 19. CASW 2016 is pre­sented by Farm Credit Canada. For more in­for­ma­tion visit agsafe­ty­

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