In 2021, more than 53,000 missing persons reports were made to Australian police.
Thankfully, about 98 per cent of missing people are found – mostly safe and well.
But around 2600 Australians are classed as long-term missing persons, meaning they have been missing for more than three months.
This National Missing Persons Week (NMPW), the AFP’s National Missing Persons Coordination Centre (NMPCC) is urging Australians to think of the people they love and ask what their life would be like without them.
AFP Acting Assistant Commissioner Specialist Protective Command Jason Kennedy said NMPW (31 July – 6 August) is an annual week of action to raise awareness of the significant issues surrounding missing persons.
“Young, old, family members, and loved ones all from a range of cultures have one thing in common – the daily fears, hopes and endless questions they leave behind,” Acting Assistant Commissioner Kennedy said.
“NMPW is supported throughout the missing persons sector and within the broader community to bring much-needed awareness and hopefully answers for those left behind.
“I encourage all Australians to take a look at the profiles of our long-term missing, share the posts and keep the families of those missing in your thoughts,” Acting Assistant Commissioner Kennedy said.
Cardinia CIU Detective Sergeant Amanda Dean said she hoped National Missing Persons Week would help prompt a significant memory for members of the public.
“It might prompt someone to recall something; they might have some information that might be valuable to assist in locating missing persons,” she said.
She added the week was also about providing closure for families of missing people.
“That’s what this week’s really all about, is the families who have loved ones who are still missing – they never get that closure,” Detective Sergeant Dean said.
“It’s always good if we can solve one to get some answers for the family.”
If you have information that may assist police to locate a missing person, please call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.