Hikind Decries Leaving Children Unattended Outside Stores While Shopping

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graco-quattro-tour-and-metrolite-strollersAssemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) was shocked when he recently encountered not one, but two unattended children – one infant and one toddler – crying in their strollers while parked outside different stores on 13th Avenue in Boro Park. Both children were observed crying and by themselves for more than ten minutes. It is a phenomenon Hikind says he sees all too often in Boro Park.

“This issue has been going on for years in Boro Park,” Hikind said. “Time and again, I have pleaded with parents, telling them that leaving their children alone in their strollers while they shop or dine in local stores and restaurants is incredibly dangerous. Would you leave your purse unattended? Of course not! So, why do so many people leave their most precious asset of all – their children – unattended? It makes absolutely no sense to me. We must protect our children.”

Hikind said that his concerns are reflected by many in the community who have complained to him that something needs to be done. “Constituents and I discuss all the time that the possibility for a real tragedy exists any time children are left alone. Our community already suffered a tremendous tragedy last July. I cannot bear the thought that something similar could God forbid occur again because people are being reckless with their children’s lives and safety.”

Hikind is urging parents to exercise better judgment and to use common sense before deciding to leave their children unattended.

{Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Welcome to boro park. as an out of towner I see this all the time, and it drives me crazy. Those parents are morons and should be ashamed of themselves.

  2. maybe it’s time for stores to accommodate shoppers with children? I realize that the stores are small and crowded, but if they would clear some room for a few strollers, it would be a great contribution to the safety of children.

    I am in no way condoning the mothers, who should be arrested, in my opinion. But I also feel the stores share some of the blame for filling every inch of the store with merchandise and leaving no room for a mother to come in with a stroller.

  3. When will people learn that their “children are more precious than diamonds.. Yet when I go shopping and see the kids hollering there is no pocketbook but yet their children!!! When will people learn??

  4. A website should be set up… Anyone who sees a an unattened child, should take a picture and post it on the site… This will deter parents…

  5. I think that if i see that i will call the police. if the people know that some one will call the police they will think twice before the will do that again.

  6. yes he has good point… its so unbelievable.. i see this in williamsburg all the time… store after store… i suggest you go into stores wen u see this and announce u will call the cops if mother wont come and if u have to follow thru… mothers are so small minded and lack priorities today… have we learned nothing from last summers story…?? wake up alll you stupid ppl your children are diamonds not your shopping!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. What’s worse, is these crazy women who push the stroller into the street first against a red light! Cars are zooming by. Real seichel!

  8. I am laughing that you are calling these children “diamonds”. I can’t begin to tell you how many jewelry stores I have walked by where the kids are left outside and the mothers are inside shopping! As for blaming the stores for lack of space, that’s ridiculous. If you can’t bring your kid or kids into the store, hire a babysitter and go shopping without them, or leave them at home with your husband.

  9. #10 your right on target!! BTW I once stopped by a crying child and waited 10 minutes till the mother came out of her basement apt. and told her off. Boy did she look at me that I was the crazy one!!
    Ladies should shopp in pairs and do shopping with a friend if possible- taking turns going into stores.
    Just because we live in a frum area doesnt mean we can get heimishe and assume all is safe.

  10. I’m so grateful this issue is being brought to the public’s attention. I was visiting Boro Park two weeks ago, and walked passed a shoe maker. Outside, unattended, was a toddler in a stroller. He wasn’t crying, and was able to see (the back of) his mother (B”H!). Inside the store there was a girl, a married woman and the shoe maker. The store had plenty of room for a stroller. I couldn’t just walk past and ignore; I felt a responsibility for the baby. I opened the door, and asked if this is anybody’s baby. The mother was shamefaced as I told her that ANYBODY can walk off with her baby! I offered to either help her bring in the stroller or watch the baby outside until she is done. As soon as she came out I left, without saying a word. May Hashem watch over us all.

  11. Would these ladies leave $1Million cash sitting outside unattended? Or $10,000, or even $500? Than how can they leave something far more precious?

  12. to #7: you are joking, right?
    If not, then i guess we should ask the Gedolim about texting while driving, looking both ways before crossing the street and other suicidal behaviors, right?

  13. Just a few weeks ago, my mother and I were parked on 13th ave outside a fruit store watching a 2.5 yr old crying and looking for her mother. My mother went into the store but couldn’t find the mother, 10 min later the mother came out from a store next door to the fruit store which was on the 2nd floor of the store. My mother gave it to the mother, the mother said sorry and she knew she was wrong but didn’t really have anything else to say. I was shocked and felt such pain from seeing the girl crying for 10 min for her mother.

  14. I do agree that the stores are not accommodating.
    I don’t know the answer. Perhaps people should have walking partners and take turns going inside the stores. The mothers have to go shopping and can’t always get babysitters.
    If someone would have a partner, one can shop while the other watches the 2 strollers, and then they switch.
    Just a suggestion. Obviously if it’s happening people don’t have a better eitzah. Punishing people will not help the poor situation. Finding a compromise or an accommodation would suit everyone better.

  15. I think it’s time to ticket them for unruly or unacceptable behaviour or endangering the life of a child.

    It’s inexcusable.

  16. Bubbymom has hit the nail right on the head. While I agree that their should be some consequence to deter mothers (and fathers – I’ve seen both!)from this kind of negligence, at the same time we need to recognize the root of the problem and try to find a solution.

    The stores in Boro Park, Williamsburg and other places as well know that they are catering to a clientele with small children in strollers. Perhaps there is a way to enact some kind of law – similar to fire hazard laws – that mandates that stores set themselves up in order to accomodate strollers.

  17. its called child endangerment, its a felony offense punishable by up to a year in prison.
    we just need someone to enforce the law –

  18. What are these mothers thinking?!
    No shmotta they’re shopping for is worth anything…I agree with the stroller & red light comment; I see this all the time in Boro Park…No, stores don’t have to accomodate strollers. Take the baby OUT of the stroller & hold them while you shop.
    Or are they afraid their stroller will be stolen., These mothers need to grow up; we suffered enough last summer with the loss of 1 precious neshomo…just knowing that the murderer was “frum” & shocked the entire world…is this not enough of a scare???!!!
    When, when will these mothers learn?!

  19. But I also feel the stores share some of the blame for filling every inch of the store with merchandise and leaving no room for a mother to come in with a stroller.

    The store owners are there to do business and to generate profits for their proprietors. They are not licensed baby minders and nor should they have to take responsibility for other people’s offspring .

  20. “Perhaps there is a way to enact some kind of law – similar to fire hazard laws – that mandates that stores set themselves up in order to accomodate strollers.” (sic)
    Why is it the store’s responsibility to watch over your child? Why do we have to make more restrictions on stores and businesses? It is hard enough these days just to stay around… why enact more (worthless) laws? So a store outside of the frum area, where people would never dream of leaving their child alone, would have to accommodate strollers? What about in “yuppie” Park Slope?
    Why should the store take responsibility for YOUR child?

  21. I was in Boro Park and was amazed to see the number of strollers seemingly abandoned in the street. It also upset me a bit when children would come up to me at street corners and ask me, “Can you cross me?” just because I looked frum. I could have kidnapped myself a baseball team’s worth of kids in one afternoon.

    Please, parents, take proper care of your precious children! Didn’t we learn enough from Leiby’s tragedy?

  22. I think there is another root of this problem: why do these women need to be shopping all the time!?! I see women in BP wearing clothes that cost more than my entire wardrobe! How about saving some money and going to a park with the kids. Most don’t need another shmatte, while the children need more attention from their mothers (and fathers).

  23. IMHO – maybe the guy doesn’t know the word and doesn’t have a dictionary?

    Dear ?: “Offspring” is just a fancy word for “children” in English. If you speak another language and think it means something different, don’t worry. IMHO was just being sarcastic.

  24. no 7 i hope u are kidding… i agree number 16… wake up just lets use our seichel and just think whats precious and whats hardly meaningful wake up

  25. @Miss Manners

    Concise Oxford English Dictionary © 2008 Oxford University Press:
    ?noun (pl. same)
    a person’s child or children, or the young of an animal.
    – origin OE ofspring (see off, spring).

    off·spring noun \??f-?spri?\
    plural offspring also offsprings
    Definition of OFFSPRING
    a : the product of the reproductive processes of an animal or plant : young, progeny
    b : child
    a : product, result
    b : offshoot 1a

    Fancy? It is a rude and dehumanizing word, equally applied to animals and – derogatively – to human beings, and a word that is unacceptable in polite company. You might also try calling “offspring” the precious baby of your boss or neighbour or town police officer. Preferably in public.

  26. @IMHO

    “The store owners are there to do business and to generate profits for their proprietors. They are not licensed baby minders and nor should they have to take responsibility for other people’s” [children]

    Were you sarcastic? Or do you think shops shouldn’t have to go out of their way accommodate people with strollers, and of course, people on wheelchairs?


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