International Missing Children’s Day – Canada
“I’m sure we all look to the day when every child in both our countries is guaranteed a true childhood, with all the magic and wonder that simple word entails.”
— Hon. Perrin Beatty, Solicitor General of Canada, March 4, 1986, speaking at the 1st National Conference on Missing and Exploited Children in Chicago, USA
May 25th, 2016, marks the 30th anniversary of Canada’s participation in International Missing Children’s Day. First proclaimed in Canada in 1986 by Solicitor General Perrin Beatty, International Missing Children’s Day is an annual reminder to make child protection a priority and renew efforts to reunite missing children with their families. The day is recognized throughout North America and Europe.
The Canadian Centre for Child Protection is recognizing this important day by releasing preliminary findings from its report titled Abducted then Murdered Children : A Canadian Study. The study examines 155 child victims and 93 offenders and is the first of this magnitude in Canada.
Keep our children safe this International Missing Children’s Day and beyond:
Teach kids 5 Safety Habits for Life
- 1. Check First: Get permission from parents before going anywhere with anyone
- 2. Use the Buddy System: Sticking together creates safety in numbers
- 3. Some Secrets Should Be Told: Secrets that make you feel scared or uncomfortable need to be told to adults
- 4. Trust Your Instincts: Pay attention to your body’s signals that warn you of danger
- 5. Be Assertive: Set clear boundaries about personal space and touching
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Origins of International Missing Children’s Day
Missing Children’s Day was originally declared in 1983 by U.S. President Ronald Reagan to honour 6-year-old Etan Patz, who disappeared on May 25, 1979, from New York City. Etan’s disappearance garnered national media attention, which was rare at that time. Etan’s father, a professional photographer, distributed black-and-white photographs of Etan in an effort to find him, resulting in large-scale searches and public recognition of the risk of child abduction.