Patrols to speed search for children lost in shopping crowds
A NEW scheme has been set up to help children lost on busy shopping streets reunite with their parents.
The new 'Safe and Found' initiative is a system whereby security guards in Dublin city centre work together to locate missing children by using their radio network.
When a child becomes separated from their parent they can go for help to the security guard in any store or shopping centre bearing the easily identifiable Safe and Found sticker showing a smiling orange sun on a blue background.
The security guard will radio a central control room to say that the child has been found and the parent will then be informed of this by any security guard they approach for help.
In the case of a parent losing a child, a security guard will radio the description of the child to all the security guards in the area where the child was last seen.
The other security guards will then try to locate the child. This type of communication between security guards in the city has been used informally for years and missing children are normally found within 10 minutes.
An education programme will be run through Dublin City Council for schools to raise children's awareness of the new scheme and help them identify the sticker as a source of help.
The scheme can be used by people who suffer from Alzheimers or dementia or by any vulnerable person.
The initiative is being coordinated by Dublin Crime Watch and supported by the Dublin City Business Association.
Tom Coffey, CEO of Dublin City Business Association, said he is proud to be part of the scheme, the first of its kind in the world.
"We have over 4,000 shops and 10 department stores and shopping centres on the city centre so it is wonderful to be able to offer families an added sense of security to make their visit even more enjoyable," he added.