Assemblyman Santabarbara Introduces New Legislation to Establish a Process for Parents to Request Early Activation of the AMBER Alert System

Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara has introduced a new legislative proposal aimed at expediting the activation of AMBER alerts in certain situations, with a special focus on cases involving children facing unique circumstances, such as disabilities. This innovative bill seeks to empower parents and legal guardians in a proactive role, providing them with the ability to request the Division of the State Police to review and potentially initiate early activation of AMBER alerts, when they believe their child may have been abducted.

Key Features of the Proposal:

  • Early Activation Mechanism: The proposed legislation establishes a mechanism to request early activation of the AMBER alert system by a parent or legal guardian. This is especially pertinent in situations with special circumstances, such as children with disabilities.
  • Parental Empowerment: The bill empowers parents and legal guardians to actively participate in decision making by formalizing a process for them to request early activation of AMBER alerts. The legislation also helps ensure a collaborative effort between caregivers, parents, and law enforcement.
  • Special Circumstances Consideration: The proposal acknowledges that each missing child case is unique, and in some circumstances, especially those involving children with disabilities, require a tailored response. This legislation aims to enhance our ability to respond effectively to these distinctive situations.

Assemblyman Santabarbara emphasizes the urgency of swift action in any potential child abduction case. "The safety and well-being of our children are of utmost importance, and every available tool must be utilized to protect them. This bill empowers parents and legal guardians to play an active role in locating missing children by establishing a formal process for them to request early activation of an AMBER alert. It ensures any unique circumstances are acknowledged and enhances our ability to safely bring missing children home."

This proposal builds on the success of the AMBER Alert system and Santabarbara calls for support from fellow legislators, child advocacy groups, and concerned citizens to champion this vital initiative.