New York City Council Header
File #: Res 0624-2004    Version: * Name: Supporting the NYPD's participation in the AMBER Alert broadcast system
Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Committee: Committee on Public Safety
On agenda: 10/13/2004
Enactment date: Law number:
Title: Resolution supporting the New York City Police Department’s participation in the AMBER Alert broadcast system, which allows police to rapidly notify the public that a child has been abducted, and urging that additional methods of alerting the public with comprehensive information be developed and implemented.
Sponsors: Peter F. Vallone, Jr., Tony Avella, Yvette D. Clarke, Leroy G. Comrie, Jr., Lewis A. Fidler, James F. Gennaro, Vincent J. Gentile, Alan J. Gerson, Robert Jackson, Letitia James, John C. Liu, Miguel Martinez, Michael C. Nelson, Annabel Palma, Domenic M. Recchia, Jr., Joel Rivera, James Sanders, Jr., Helen Sears, Kendall Stewart, Albert Vann, David I. Weprin, Allan W. Jennings, Jr., Melinda R. Katz, Larry B. Seabrook, Dennis P. Gallagher, Andrew J. Lanza, James S. Oddo, Betsy Gotbaum
Council Member Sponsors: 28
Attachments: 1. Committee Report, 2. Heairng Transcript - Stated Meeting 12/15/04, 3. Hearing Transcript

Res. No. 624

 

Resolution supporting the New York City Police Department’s participation in the AMBER Alert broadcast system, which allows police to rapidly notify the public that a child has been abducted, and urging that additional methods of alerting the public with comprehensive information be developed and implemented.

 

By Council Members Vallone Jr., Avella, Clarke, Comrie, Fidler, Gennaro, Gentile, Gerson, Jackson, James, Liu, Martinez, Nelson, Palma, Recchia Jr., Rivera, Sanders Jr., Sears, Stewart, Vann, Weprin, Jennings, Katz, Seabrook, Gallagher, Lanza, Oddo and The Public Advocate (Ms. Gotbaum)

 

Whereas, The AMBER Alert broadcast system (America’s Missing Broadcast Emergency Response) is a voluntary partnership among law enforcement agencies, TV and radio broadcasters and Internet providers to send out an emergency alert to the public when a child has been abducted and it is believed that the child’s life is in grave danger; and

                     Whereas, Named after 9 year old Amber Hagerman, a Texas girl who was kidnapped and brutally murdered while riding her bicycle, the program is designed to galvanize the entire community to assist in the search for and safe return of an abducted child, particularly during the first crucial hours after an abduction; and

                     Whereas, Although each law enforcement agency establishes its own criteria and method in using the alert system, child abduction experts agree that after law enforcement confirms a child has been abducted, believes the circumstances surrounding the abduction indicate the child is in danger of serious bodily harm or death, and has enough descriptive information about the child and abductor, this information should then be sent to TV and radio stations and Internet providers who will broadcast the information in a bulletin form; and

                     Whereas, According to a 1997 U.S. Department of Justice study, of the 557 cases of stranger child abduction which resulted in the death of the child, in 44% of the cases the child was murdered within the first hour and in 74% of the cases the child was murdered within three hours of abduction; and

                     Whereas, When searching for an abducted child, particularly in the crucial first hours, law enforcement must use every method at its disposal to locate the child; even in a city as large as New York, the AMBER Alert system may make the difference between the life and death of an abducted child; and

                     Whereas, The New York City Police Department, recognizing the efficacy of the program, participates in AMBER Alert; and

                     Whereas, In addition to alerting local media, the NYPD also works in conjunction with the Department of Transportation to broadcast Amber Alert messages on electronic signs above the city’s highways; and

                     Whereas, The State Legislature and Governor recently recognized the value of alerting the public about missing children through all possible means when they enacted an amendment to the Amber Alert law to include that such notices may also be disseminated by Internet providers through electronic mail messages; and   

Whereas, In light of the obvious benefits of the Amber Alert program, the New York City Police Department should be applauded for its participation and should work at adopting additional methods of alerting the public; now, therefore, be it

                     Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York supports the New York City Police Department’s participation in the AMBER Alert broadcast system, which allows police to rapidly notify the public that a child has been abducted, and urges that additional methods of alerting the public with comprehensive information be developed and implemented.

 

TJB

LS# 966