Punishment for Shoplifting

Here are a few ways experts suggest that parents can use shoplifting incidents to teach children lessons:

• Make the offender repay the price of the merchandise. If he doesn’t have the money, make him work it off. Be creative.

• “Volunteer” her time at a community agency.

• Have him apologize – in person, in writing, or both – to the people he stole from. If it’s a store, have him apologize to the manager.

• Assign her to write a paper on stealing.

• Make him buy some educational materials to donate to a local school, the police department or a community agency.

• When choosing to limit your child’s privileges, make sure it is something you have control over and can follow through on.

Excerpted with permission from “Is Your Child Stealing? A Guide for Parents,” by the Minnesota Youth Intervention Programs Association. >

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Kids & Shoplifting: What It Means and What Parents Can Do About It