STATEHOUSE (March 6, 2018) — The Senate yesterday unanimously passed State Rep. Sharon Negele’s (R-Attica) bill that would expand Silver Alerts to include missing children with disabilities.
Silver Alerts are issued by law enforcement and voluntarily broadcast by TV and radio stations when an adult with disabilities has wandered from their caregiver and is unlikely to return home without assistance. Negele’s legislation would expand this alert to include missing children with mental or physical disabilities.
“This measure would require the same alert to be issued for children with disabilities as adults who may wander from their caregiver or home,” Negele said. “Currently, there is a gap in our emergency alert system and children with disabilities who have wandered from their home do not fall under any alert category. This legislation would ensure the public is notified when a child with disabilities has gone missing who is likely to need assistance in getting home safely.”
Indiana’s current emergency alert system for abducted children, also known as an Amber Alert, does not apply to children who leave their home, school or care facility at their own free will. Negele said her bill would ensure children with disabilities who do wander are included under the more appropriate Silver Alert.
According to Negele, Silver Alerts in Indiana helped locate 88 percent of those missing persons from 2013 through 2017.
House Bill 1248 can now be considered by the governor. To learn more, visit iga.in.gov.
State Rep. Sharon Negele represent House District 13, which includes all of Benton County, and portions
of Fountain, Jasper, Montgomery, Newton, Tippecanoe, Warren and White counties.
A high-resolution photo of Negele can be found here.