Police forces have registered twice as many reports of missing children in Quebec this year as 5 years ago.
The RCMP’s annual report shows a fourth consecutive drop in child disappearances in our territory. This number has risen from 7,056 five years ago to 3,456 in 2021.
It should be noted that in the country, 67% of the young people were found in the first hours after the notification, while 92% of them were seen in the first week.
For the director general of Réseau Enfants-Retour, the only non-profit organization in Quebec that accompanies a missing child’s loved one, Pina Arcamone, these statistics are encouraging, even though they are still inadequate.
“We agree that 3,000 disappearances are still 3,000 for many. The battle is far from over, we must focus on the importance of educating our young people, “said Ms.me Arcamon.
A portrait of what his sister could look like today.
According to her, this fall is explained by a greater awareness in the population about this problem. There is also the pandemic, which has led to school closures, incarceration and teleworking.
Hoping to perpetuate this decline, Missing Children’s Network is organizing an information campaign in schools, community centers and day care centers aimed at better “equipping” parents and their young.
As part of Missing Children’s Month in May, the organization will focus on an unsolved disappearance case in Quebec through social networks. “People are being asked to share the kidnapping messages and leave a message of empathy for those families who are still waiting for a solution,” the director general clarified.
After raising more than $ 25,000 last year to help families in need, this year the Missing Children’s Network will seek to raise $ 10,000, which will be redistributed.
“We want to make noise to find missing children, but also to protect our young people from malicious people.”
Most families never give up, even decades after a disappearance. This is the case with Adolphe Carrier, whose little sister Diane disappeared in 1963 at the age of 6.
On Friday, September 27, 1963, at dinner time, seven-year-old Adolphe Carrier returned from an evening in the park with friends. When he arrives home in the old port of Quebec, his mother asks him where his little sister has gone to look for him.
Worried, the boy quickly returns outside to try to find her. Almost 60 years later, he is still looking for Diane.
“The hardest thing, even today, is trust. When at some point you are told that you are good for nothing all your childhood by your father, it is certain that it goes into your head,” admits Adolphe Carrier .
To give balm to this guilt that has inhabited him for so long, he, who now resides in La Doré, in Lac-Saint-Jean, wants people to spend a moment analyzing his sister’s physical appearance, if they knew a similar woman.
“It only takes one person to make the difference,” he recalls.
Easy to remember advice
The Missing Children’s Network offers easy – to – follow tips for families. Pina Arcamone recommends that parents set up a password system with trusted adults around them.
In this way, the young person will be able to provide the secret code to the individual who is trying to contact him, and if he cannot answer correctly, the child will understand that he must move away as soon as possible.
Mr. Carrier believes that small gestures can make the difference, adding in the same breath that this kind of drama unfortunately “does not just happen to others”.
Number of children reported missing in Quebec
- 2017: 7025
- 2018: 5927
- 2019: 5805
- 2020: 3831
- 2021: 3456
Young people found quickly
59% of disappearances involve girls
67% children are found in the first hours, 92% In the first week
Near 80% of disappearances involve runaway children
Source: National Center for Missing Persons and Unidentified Remains (CNPDRN)