The Bahamas launches child abduction alert program
The Bahamas now has the MARCO Alert, a child abduction alert system patterned after the AMBER Alert. Government and law enforcement leaders gathered on August 21, 2019, for a signing ceremony for the new law. The alert is named for Marco Archer who went missing in 2011 and was later found dead. The MARCO Alert will notify law enforcement and the public through traditional and social media. Minister of National Security Marvin Dames noted that the following day, August 22, was Marco’s birthday and he would have turned 19-years-old. “He once indicated to his mother that he wanted to be a policeman to arrest the ‘bad guys’,” Minister Dames shared. “While Marco may never suit up in a uniform, Marco’s Law and Marco’s Alert, both named in his honor, will ensure that he will always play a critical role in assisting the police in arresting the bad guys.”
Australian city begins using billboards to post AMBER Alerts
The Brisbane, Australia, City Council started a partnership with the Outdoor Media Association (OMA) to begin posting AMBER Alerts on outdoor signs. The digital signs will post the abducted child’s photo and other information within 30 minutes after an AMBER Alert is issued. “We hope the Brisbane Amber Alerts pilot program will inform how we can build a system to roll out Amber Alerts across Australia,” said Charmaine Moldrich, OMA CEO. The OMA is working with the Out of Home Advertising Association of America and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in the United States on the pilot program.
European officers meet in the Czech Republic for AMBER Alert training
More than 40 law enforcement officers from 16 countries gathered in Prague for the second European Expert Network on Missing Children Forum. The training held September 4-6, 2019, included real-life missing person cases to learn about the best practices for safely recovering missing and abducted children. “When a child goes missing and they need support from colleagues in another country, they will know exactly who to call at 3 a.m. in the morning,” said Frank Hoen, Chairman and Founder of AMBER Alert Europe. “This will highly contribute to saving more missing children, which of course is our ultimate goal.”