Now there will be one more way to assist authorities in searching for missing children.
Facebook has joined forces with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children in an effort to make detailed Amber Alerts available on your computer or mobile device.
“If you’re not listening to the radio, watching TV or driving on the highway [to receive an Amber Alert],” says John Walsh, an advocate for missing children and currently the host of CNN’s The Hunt, “Facebook will put pictures, description of the vehicle involved. It is a serious game-changer.”
Despite more than 180 million Americans using Facebook, the Amber Alert will stay regionalized and be directed only to users in the area where the child is missing, says Facebook’s trust and safety manager Emily Vacher.
“Most people who are on Facebook will likely seen none, maybe one or two a year,” she says. “But we want them to know that when they do see one of these on Facebook, it means they’re actually in a position that they may be able to help bring a child home.”
Users will be able to delete the post should they desire, but Walsh hopes everyone takes a moment to read the information and keep their eyes open.
“I’m positive it will find children alive,” he says. “This is social media at its best.”