Recovery rate for missing children is 97 percent

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Jovanna Hill, 13, is now home with her mom in Tuscaloosa. She was first reported missing in April. Tuscaloosa sheriff’s deputies say the mother and daughter were reunited Friday night.

WIAT 42 News learned the recovery rate for children who are reported missing is 97 percent.

Hill’s story is one of the happier endings. She’s safe and at home with her mother. For some, though, the ending is far less happy.

“Unfortunately, they are not all happy and the child comes home perfectly healthy,” said John Bishoff with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. “What we are providing in some cases is resolution for the family.”

He says law enforcement is better trained now in the area of finding the missing children.

Applications like the FBI’s Child ID go a long way in education parents on how to react quickly if their child goes missing.

“It gives you more of a checklist to follow if your child goes missing,” Bishoff said.

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children has a 24-hour hotline, but Bishoff says the public can take some steps to help out those working to find the missing.

“The two things that I recommend for the public is one: awareness. Look at those missing child posters. We target those posters to where the child is believe to be,” Bishoff said. “Someone from Alabama is not seeing someone who is believed to be in Maine.”

The second step is educating your children, Bishoff says.

Take25.org is a website that walks parents step-by-step through teaching their children about the dangers that exist. It doesn’t make them fearful, just street smart.

Copyright 2014 WIAT 42 News

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