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Contact: Mark Anderson
New York State Sheriffs’ Association
(518) 434-9091

For immediate release: Tuesday, Aug. 24, 2010

State Sheriffs’ Association to offer Operation SAFE CHILD program at New York State Fair

This year’s fair runs from Thursday, Aug. 26 through Monday, Sept. 6

The New York State Sheriffs' Association once again will offer the Operation SAFE CHILD program at the Great New York State Fair, which opens on Thursday, Aug. 26 and runs through Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 6, at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse.

The free program provides parents or legal guardians with a card that contains their child’s vital information, including date of birth, gender, height, weight and eye color, along with a photograph and fingerprint images of both index fingers. From start to finish, the entire process takes less than two minutes.

The Operation SAFE CHILD booth will be located in the Center of Progress Building (Booth S-1), next to the main lobby entrance; exhibit buildings open at 10 a.m. Working in conjunction with the New York State Sheriffs’ Association, sheriffs from across the state and their deputies will volunteer their time to help families either update their existing SAFE CHILD cards or obtain one for the first time.

Click here for more information about Operation SAFE CHILD.

In addition to receiving a SAFE CHILD card, parents can agree to have their child’s information stored in a secure database at the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services so that it can be disseminated instantly if that child is abducted or lost. When a child is reported missing, time can be the greatest adversary. Possessing up-to-date photographs and detailed information about a child assists law enforcement in quickly responding to a disappearance and can dramatically increase the possibility of safe return.

When used in conjunction with AMBER Alert or the New York State Missing Child Alert program, the SAFE CHILD card serves as a valuable tool by quickly providing identifying details to law enforcement agencies investigating child disappearances.

By the closing date of this year’s New York State Fair, it is estimated that more than 400,000 children statewide will be enrolled in the SAFE CHILD program.