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Better Ensure Your Personal Safety

Peace of mind is a walk in the park with 5Star

By Madeline Pantalone

I’m an avid walker. And I usually walk alone. Occasionally my granddaughters join me, but it’s really my time to do something good for myself, by myself. My personal goal is to walk between three and five miles a day, and I’m pleased to say on average I’m achieving it. I live in a relatively nice neighborhood, but I’ve become more aware of local crime, and recently decided to pay more attention to a few commonsense steps to better ensure my personal safety.

One of the most serious safety issues for women, regardless of our exercise of choice, is not paying attention. We’re so busy concentrating on something else, or how much farther we have to go, that we don’t always pay attention to what is happening right here, right now. Or we get distracted with our cell phones or listening to music. That’s when we become vulnerable. For this reason I’ve stopped taking my phone or iPod. But I do carry my 5Star, and I try to follow the good advice of safety experts:

  • Exercise with a companion when you can
  • Exercise in a familiar area
  • Avoid secluded areas and places where someone can hide
  • Don’t exercise after dark, if possible
  • Face traffic if you’re near the road
  • Wear bright-colored clothing to improve your visibility
  • Vary your route and pattern
  • Always be aware of your surroundings and keep alert
  • Carry pepper spray or, preferably, a personal safety device (I believe 5Star is the best device on the market)

The 5Star is a small cellular device, about the size of a luxury car key fob, with a single button to activate a call to an emergency call center or 911. GreatCall, which sells both the device and the service behind it, encourages women to carry 5Star in a pocket or clipped to an article of clothing, and to press the button to talk to a certified emergency response agent whenever they feel vulnerable or uncertain. It doesn’t have to be a 911 situation. The agent knows who you are and where you are, and will facilitate the proper response, whether it’s connecting to 911 or calling a spouse to pick you up. There’s no need for your cell phone and its distractions — 5Star provides you help at a touch of the button.

Madeline Pantalone is the vice president of business development at GreatCall, Inc., a telecommunications company focusing on cellular products, applications and services that support families staying connected, personal safety and healthy living. Madeline has four adventuresome grandchildren living in different cities, a challenge that fosters her enthusiasm about the important role GreatCall products can play in maintaining good communication between family members.

Christine Crosby

About the author

Christine is the co-founder and editorial director for GRAND Magazine. She is the grandmother of five and great-grandmom (aka Grandmere) to one. She makes her home in St. Petersburg, Florida.

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