Backgrounder - International Missing Children’s Day
Every year on May 25, countries around the globe recognize the importance of International Missing Children’s Day by honouring missing and abducted children and those who have been recovered.
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada’s Vulnerable Children’s Consular Unit (VCU) works together with several federal partners, including Passport Canada, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Department of Justice Canada, the Canada Border Services Agency and Employment and Social Development Canada, as well as with domestic governmental and non-governmental organizations, to prevent or address cases in a coordinated and expedient manner. The VCU has been recognized for its international capacity to effectively and efficiently locate and return children to their parents or legal guardians.
Several resources for parents who travel with children are available on the Government of Canada’s one-stop shop website, Travel.gc.ca.
Parents who sense that their child could be—or become—the victim of an international abduction are encouraged to consult a lawyer, contact police, if necessary, and become familiar with the information services that are available to assist them.
The following tools have been developed to provide practical and timely information in a user-friendly format for parents:
- the publication Travelling with Children
- a recommended consent letter for children travelling abroad alone or with only one parent or guardian
- information on taking small children through security screening
- information on child abduction and custody issues
- information on international adoption
- the publication International Child Abduction: A Guidebook for Left-Behind Parents
- the Registration of Canadians Abroad service
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