If you cannot get in touch with someone and are concerned for their welfare it is important that you contact us as soon as you can to report the person missing.
In order for us to start looking for the person we will need to know some important information, including:
- The person’s details and a physical description of them.
- Where the person is missing from.
- Any clothing the person may be wearing.
- Whether their absence appears to be planned (clothing or valuables missing).
- Any vehicles the person may have access to.
- Any distinguishing features the person may have.
- Any telephone number or social media accounts they may have.
- Any addresses the person may go to, or friends they may have.
- Any medical conditions the person may have and any vital medication they need.
- Whether the person has any known mental health conditions.
- The reason (if known) for the person’s disappearance.
- If there have been any recent life changing events which would affect their physical or mental wellbeing.
- If the person is dependent on alcohol or drugs (prescribed or illegal).
We understand that you may not know the answers to any of these questions but they help us to build up a picture of the missing person’s lifestyle and assess any immediate risks to their safety and wellbeing.
Police will commence a missing person search and will attend with you to record further details whilst the search is in progress. You may be asked for a recent picture of the missing person to help us locate them.
A search for a missing person, especially a high risk missing person, uses police officers from all over Northern Ireland. We will keep you updated with our progress.
It is vital that if you receive any communication with the missing person while we are searching for them, you let us know as soon as possible. It may help us locate them and ensure their wellbeing faster.
Once we locate someone we will ensure their physical and mental wellbeing. If required, we will task medical or mental health professionals to assess the person. You should note that if you report an adult missing and we locate them, they may not wish their location known. In this instance we will update you that they are safe and well, but we cannot disclose their location.
The Herbert Protocol, is a pilot initiative in the policing district of Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon launching in September 2021, with plans for further rollout in 2022.
It has been launched by the Police Service of Northern Ireland in partnership with Dementia NI, the Health & Social Care Board and local Policing and Community Safety Partnership, to enable officers to work quicker to find those with dementia who go missing.
It is a simple risk reduction tool consisting of a pre-completed form that contains vital information about a person at risk that can be supplied to the police at the earliest opportunity when that person is reported missing.
You can download the form by clicking here