Parenting Connection: 3-step hand gesture to indicate danger

Parenting Connection

LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – It’s Parenting Connection Tuesday and 6 News is here for you with tips, strategies, and helpful reminders from local child development experts on how we can be better parents and guardians.

Today’s topic: 3-step hand gesture to indicate danger.

Not all things learned on social media by your children are bad. A recent report involving a hand signal that went viral and shared, and in this particular case, via TikTok — ended up saving a missing 16-year old girl found in Kentucky who had been abducted. A caller told 911 that a female passenger in a car in front of her was making hand gestures that recently became viral on TikTok to represent “violence at home,” “I need help” and/or “domestic violence.” Authorities caught up with the suspected car — and sure enough — according to the Laurel County Sheriff’s Office, investigators found the driver, 61-year-old Herbert Brick, in possession of a photo of the teen engaged in sexual acts and the girl had been reported missing by her parents in North Carolina a week earlier.

Let’s get into the hand signals. They’re a mix of three hand gestures safety officials say, people should use discreetly on web cameras or other situations, like in the case of the missing teenager, when they cannot freely speak about a dangerous situation or call for help. It includes:

*Holding a hand up with the palm facing the other person
*Tuck the thumb into the palm
*Fold the fingers down over the thumb

Representatives from the Women’s Funding Network, who created this signal initially for the rise in domestic violence seen during the Covid-19 lockdown now want students to know this universal gesture — and use it when they are in an uncomfortable situation. In the case of this North Carolina teenager — it saved her life.

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