Contact: Janine Kava, Press Office
New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services
(518) 457-8906 or (518) 275-5508 – cell
For immediate release: Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2007
Operation SAFE CHILD cards available at Erie County Fair
HAMBURG – Parents and guardians will be able to obtain Operation SAFE CHILD cards for their children this weekend at the Erie County Fair.
Representatives from the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services’ Missing and Exploited Children Clearinghouse will be at the fair from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 10 and Saturday, Aug. 11, and from noon to 6 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 12.
Operation SAFE CHILD provides parents or legal guardians with a card that includes their child’s/children vital information: date of birth, gender, height, weight, eye color, along with a photograph and fingerprint images of both index fingers.
Parents or guardians also can choose to have that vital information stored in a DCJS database; storage in the database is entirely voluntary and requires written consent of the parent or legal guardian.
If DCJS receives a missing child report, the fingerprints of that child will be included in a special search file and compared against all incoming fingerprints submitted to the agency.
Time is the greatest enemy if a child goes missing. Having up-to-date photographs and detailed information about a child can greatly assist law enforcement officials as they respond to a child’s disappearance.
The New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) and its Missing and Exploited Children Clearinghouse partnered with the New York State Police, New York City Police Department, New York State Sheriffs’ Association and the New York State Association of Chiefs of Police to create Operation SAFE CHILD in 2005.
Since the program’s inception in July 2005 through July 2007, more than 154,000 children in New York State have been fingerprinted and photographed through Operation SAFE CHILD.
DCJS partners with 38 law enforcement agencies across the state – including the Buffalo Police Department and Erie County Sheriff’s Office – to offer Operation SAFE CHILD.
For more information about Operation SAFE CHILD, call 1-800-FINDKID or visit www.operationsafechild.org.
The New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services is a multi-function criminal justice support agency with a variety of responsibilities, including collecting and analyzing statewide crime data; operates the DNA databank and criminal fingerprint files; administers federal and state criminal justice funds; supports criminal justice-related agencies across the state; and administers the state’s Sex Offender Registry and a toll-free telephone number (1-800-262-3257) that allows anyone to research the status of an offender.