GOLDEN, Colo (CBS4) The Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office puts on an annual Safety Fair that offers a wide range of valuable information. The DA’s Safety Fair has something for everybody within the community, from ages 3 to 93. There are fun events for kids including a bounce house and face painting, but then also serious safety demonstrations, like bicycle safety and child identification kits.
“We will actually have two groups out there doing children id kits. One records them on computer immediately, and then the other is actually going to do a DNA swab,” said Cary Johnson, a fraud investigator with the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office.
The DNA swabs are then given to parents to keep on-hand in case of an emergency.
The DA’s Safety Fair is a great place to get rid of some of your old and unwanted stuff, like old cellphones, old documents, and old prescriptions. The Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office will get the phones wiped of all information, and fixed so they only call 9-1-1. The DA’s office then redistributes the phones for free.
“We’re able to give a 911 cell phone to a senior. All it will do is make a 911 call, but for them that can become a lifeline that they can carry when they are out working in their backyard or taking a walk or going to the grocery store,” Johnson told CBS4.
Getting rid of your old document is one of the best ways to prevent identity theft. The Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office will be offering free shredding for up to 5 boxes or bags of paper records at the Safety Fair.
“Not everybody has shredding machines and this is an opportunity for us to again, educate the public that it’s important to dispose of your documents in the right manner, and we provide the mechanism by which we can do that,” said Peter Weir, District Attorney, 1st Judicial District, which includes Jefferson and Gilpin counties.
Prescription drugs are fast becoming the most abused kind of drug, mostly because it’s so easy to access them. Also, flushing them down the toilet or drain is bad for the environment. That’s why it’s so important for everyone to dispose of their old, out-of-date prescription drugs properly. Law enforcement will collect pills at the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Safety Fair, so that they can then be incinerated.
“We’re seeing a greater incidence of abuse of prescription drugs. In fact, that made lead our prosecution efforts with respect to abuse of drugs in general,” Weir added.
As many as 50-percent of Americans have a mistake on their credit report. One service offered at the DA’s Safety Fair is a chance to go over your credit report with a banker. Staff from the DA’s office will pull your credit report, you will have to provide your social security number in order to get the report. Then you can sit down with a banker and go over the report looking for inaccurate information. This is something you won’t find anywhere else.
For the first time at the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Safety Fair, you can sign up for two notification systems, Code Red and Smart 911. Both systems are designed to send out automated calls to cell or land lines.
“Should there be some kind of emergency in their neighborhood with a crime activity, they would immediately receive a call if they sign up for one of these two lists,” Johnson explained.
The goal of the DA’s Safety Fair is to educate as many people as possible in the best practices for protecting their health, finances, and property.
“We believe that the first step in preventing crime is to inform the public and that’s really what our Safety Fair is about,” Weir said.
Last year more than 5,000 people took advantage of all the information and demonstrations at the fair. There are nearly 90 different agencies and organizations taking part.
“Arvada Fire Department, as part of their booth, is going to demonstrate the new CPR procedures right there at the Safety Fair. And something that I think is pretty interesting, the Wheatridge Animal Hospital will help people know how to give CPR to their animals or pets,” Johnson said.
There will also be booths on car seat safety, teen driving safety, fire safety, water and boating safety and much, much more. The Jefferson County District Attorney’s Safety Fair is Saturday, August 24th from 9am to 1pm at the Jefferson County Fair Grounds.
–Written for cbsdenver.com by Special Projects Producer Libby Smith