(WHTM) — There is a new push to arm parents with tools to help police track down small children who become lost.
Parents have the usual fears for their kids: bumps, bruises, broken bones, and broken hearts. But there are also more terrifying dangers.
“The fact is, is that there are people who are consistently attempting, and unfortunately successfully abducting children from our communities,” said Senator Scott Martin (R-Lancaster County).
“Sex trafficking, child trafficking, it’s getting horrific,” added Senator Camera Bartolotta (R).
Senate Bill 460 would help parents fight back and would give every first grader in Pennsylvania a child identification kit that has kids’ fingerprints, DNA samples, and a description.
There is no database or shared storage. Parents keep the kits until law enforcement needs them to identify a lost child.
“That is what it’s all about, giving parents the tools to help them hug their children again, to end the torturous nightmare of forever worrying if their children are safe, or even alive. These kits could give parents the greatest gift of all,” Bartolotta said.
The kits are $3 each and the bill calls for 150,000 of them, but supporters are hopeful private donors will kick in the cash to give these kits to all school kids, ensuring that Pennsylvania can join the 32 other states participating in the Child ID Program.
“Think about the devastation of losing a child on something that maybe you could have prevented if you had this information and you could have given them to law enforcement,” said Senator Michele Brooks (R-Crawford/Lawrence/Mercer Counties).
Officials say there’s no doubt these ID kits save lives, but they don’t know how many. Because the kit goes from a parent to the police and is not otherwise documented.