1,461 Children Ran Away From Home, Institutions in 2019

Total Croatia News

Photo by Guduru Ajay bhargav from Pexels
Photo by Guduru Ajay bhargav from Pexels

Photo by Guduru Ajay bhargav from Pexels

ZAGREB, May 24, 2020 – The Centre for Missing and Abused Children has warned that runaway children are at risk of becoming victims of abuse, exploitation, and human trafficking, and last year alone 1,461 children ran away from the family home or an institution in Croatia.

In 2019, according to Interior Ministry data, 326 children ran away from the family home and 1,135 from a correctional institution, the Centre has said on the occasion of International Missing Children’s Day, observed on May 25.

Thirty-eight of the children who ran away from the family home were under 14 and it is especially worrying that in eight cases a crime was committed against the child at the time of the escape, the Centre added in a press release.

The Centre operates a 116000 hotline, which is the national number for reporting missing children.

“The disappearance of children is considered one of the riskiest situations in which various crimes can be committed against a child, such as abuse, exploitation, or human trafficking,” the press release said.

European centres also work on the protection of children on the Internet because of the risk that a child becomes a victim of abduction or human trafficking. The Croatian centre also works on campaigns to raise awareness of the potential dangers that can occur when a child runs away.

“From the very beginning, we have been advocating better cooperation between the police, social welfare centres, institutions which accommodate children and other relevant bodies, notably for the establishment of the Amber Alert system which is operational in most European countries as an excellent tool to locate a child,” the press release said.


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