Questions Posted to "Ask a Dispatcher"
Q. what is the law in alaska that shows at what age a child can legally be left home alone? (example: going home after school). Please provide a link with information about that law.
Dear Juneau Resident,
There is no 'bright line' law that says at certain age a child can be left home alone or is too young to be home alone. Children can be very different developmentally at the same age. Some kids can be left home alone or with loose supervision, like from a neighbor, once he or she is of school age. It would be difficult for anyone to claim that a child under school age can be left alone at all so that would be potentially a reckless endangerment case or certainly warrant a referral to the Office of Children's Services. When officers have had to go to a home because something happened like a noise complaint or the child is playing with a phone the officers may advise the parent that a particular child probably isn't ready to be home alone.
If you are aware of there being problems or risks to a child going home alone after school you should report it. That would be things like other children coming over and there being no adult supervision for a group of children, or lighting things on fire in the backyard, etc...