One of your greatest fears is that your child might get lost, or worse, be abducted. If this were to occur your prompt response to this incident is critical. You must be prepared to react.
You must have recent photographs, know what your child wears each day, and have concrete means for tracking your child. Fingerprints are unique to every child. Contact your local police department. They usually have a program for children. Use it and keep those fingerprint cards in a safe place.
What do you do if your child is missing?
You must act immediately to the situation at hand. Waste no time. If your child is missing from home, search all closets, floor spaces, piles of laundry, under beds, in beds, inside old containers, inside of your vehicles, inside of your garage, under the porch, EVERYWHERE possible a child could hide in or fall asleep in. Check with neighbors, and friends.
If missing away from home, notify the management or security officers of the place you are at and ask for their assistance, then immediately call the police. Do not let them talk you out of calling the police. Call the police and their assistance will add to the numbers of people looking for your child.
Try and stay calm. Call the police and identify yourself and your location. Remember, your staying calm and providing exacting information will assist them in finding your child. Tell them “Please send an officer, I want to report a missing child.”
Tell them your child’s name, date of birth, height, weight, eye and hair color, any identifiers such as birth marks or defects, eyeglasses or contacts, piercing, braces, clothing, medical conditions, anything unique to your child.
Tell the police when you last saw your child and what he or she was wearing when you last saw them.
Listen to the police, follow their instructions, and respond to their questions. They are the professionals and may ask you questions that seem “weird” of not applicable to the situation. Trust me; they are applicable to every situation.
Tell the police you want your child’s name and identifying information entered into the FBI National Crime Information Center (NCIC). This system alerts all law enforcement agencies in the USA of your missing child. If you have any doubt if the police followed up with this request you can call the FBI and ask them to make the entry for you.
You should and can contact the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 800-THE-LOST. They too can verify that your child’s information is entered in the NCIC missing person file.
Contact a support group. They will assist you in the mental ups and downs you will go through. They will put you in contact with persons of like circumstances.
Above all, the best deterrent to a missing child is to always keep an eye on them. Follow some of the suggestions I had in my last article. Share this with your friends and hopefully, you’ll never need to use this information.