Assemblyman Ed Flood (R,C-Port Jefferson) introduced legislation that would require local law enforcement to establish a “Teal Alert” for missing adults including victims of domestic violence who are believed to be in danger (A.3230). Similar to the Amber Alert national system for missing children and the Silver Alert for seniors and adults with mental health issues, the Teal Alert would ensure that information relating to the individual's disappearance is quickly disseminated to the public for assistance.
This legislation was introduced in honor of Long Island native Gabby Petito who made national news after she was missing for 19 days while traveling across the country with her boyfriend. Her death was later ruled a homicide and had a Teal Alert system been in place due to her family's concern for her well-being, it could have saved her life. Families, friends and advocates wore teal ribbons on her behalf to represent her bright blue eye color.
This legislation was held for consideration in the Assembly Governmental Operations Committee, which means it will not be introduced during this legislative session for a vote on the floor.
“As the father of five children, Gabby Petito’s case inspired me to want to protect my own children as well as those of every other parent. According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV), 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the U.S.– an unacceptable and unsettling statistic. Implementing Teal Alerts would help protect victims just as the Amber Alert helps find missing children by alerting the public to get their attention and likely their assistance. It is disheartening to know that this legislation will not make it to the floor this session solely based on Albany’s one-party rule,” said Flood.