24-hour hotline for missing children opened
DISTRAUGHT parents whose children vanish in Ireland or abroad will be able to dial a 24-hour missing children's hotline.
More than 639,000 children were reported missing throughout Europe last year, with just over 6,000 cases reported to the gardai.
After a lengthy battle for funding, children's group the ISPCC has confirmed the 116 000 hotline would now be open on a 24-hour basis to offer support to either missing children in a position to call, or distressed family and friends.
Superintendent Matthew Nyland, from the Garda missing persons unit, believes it will be a benefit for parents.
However, he stressed it was vital parents always call gardai first if they believe their child might be missing.