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OJJDP News @ a Glance

This issue highlights the National Missing Children’s Day commemoration, the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, the annual symposium for AMBER Alert coordinators, and a Tribal community of practice.
Message From the Administrator: When a Child Goes Missing
Action Plan - Administrator Liz Ryan

Message From the Administrator: When a Child Goes Missing

Lost. Absent. Vanished. There is no word to adequately express the emptiness that is left behind when a child goes missing.

I am Liz Ryan, the Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, which is better known as OJJDP.

This May, we mark our annual commemoration of National Missing Children’s Day.

National Missing Children’s Day is both a solemn commemoration and a meaningful demonstration of support. It is a time to honor the heroes who work tirelessly to protect and bring missing children home. These heroes go well above and far beyond the call of duty—often risking personal safety.

We are also recognizing the dedicated investigators who protect children by ferreting out child sexual abuse material in the darkest corners of the Internet. Their job is both emotionally challenging and never complete.

I am pleased to announce that OJJDP held the first in-person Missing Children's Day ceremony since 2018 on May 24. Honorees were awarded the Attorney General's Special Commendation, the Missing Children's Child Protection Award, and the Missing Children's Law Enforcement Award. 

National Missing Children’s Day is also an opportunity to express our unending support for children who are missing and for the families who miss them. These families have experienced enormous trauma, and we remain committed to helping them heal.

OJJDP is proud to provide significant support to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, or NCMEC. The center provides vital information and resources for families of missing and exploited children, and the professionals who serve them. OJJDP has partnered with the center since they opened their doors nearly 40 years ago, and we look forward to continuing our work together.

NCMEC operates a toll-free Missing Children’s Hotline, as well as a CyberTipline where individuals can report suspected online child exploitation. In 2022 alone, NCMEC helped resolve more than 27,000 cases involving children who were reported missing. They also provided more than 32 million reports regarding potential online child exploitation to law enforcement.

Another essential effort to bring missing children home is the AMBER Alert program, which issues urgent bulletins in child abduction cases. In 2022, OJJDP awarded $4.4 million to provide training and technical assistance to AMBER Alert coordinators. 

To learn more about all our efforts to ensure every child returns home and this year's commemoration, please visit our website, ojjdp.ojp.gov

There is no bigger void than the one left by a missing child. And there is no more noble pursuit than bringing missing children home. Until every child is found, accounted for, and recovered, OJJDP will continue to support the professionals who help them—and the families who love them.

Thank you.

Date Created: June 13, 2023