Weekly News Brief
AMBER Alerts Now on Facebook — At a news conference on Jan. 12 at the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC), Laurie O. Robinson, OJP's Assistant Attorney General, said, "As the National AMBER Alert Coordinator, I would like to thank NCMEC and Facebook for working together to develop another way the public can join with us to bring home missing and abducted children. We can all play our part by being aware and responsive to AMBER Alert postings that we will now see on Facebook." The new Facebook pages include one main page as well as 53 local pages, one for each of the 50 states plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. By signing up to become a "fan" of the appropriate page, Facebook users can receive AMBER Alerts. The AMBER Alert system began 15 years ago in Arlington, Texas, when local broadcasters joined with law enforcement in the aftermath of Amber Hagerman's abduction and murder, and it has evolved to include law enforcement agencies, broadcasters, transportation agencies, the wireless industry, and others who have joined with us to expand the reach of AMBER Alerts. Since then the AMBER Alert program has helped find and safely recover 525 abducted children.
SMART Office Hosts Workshop For Jurisdictions About Complying with Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act — More than 240 SORNA jurisdictional representatives from states, territories and tribes participated in a workshop hosted by OJP's Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering and Tracking (SMART) on Jan. 11. The workshop was designed to assist jurisdictions in their efforts to implement SORNA, Title I of the Adam Walsh Act of 2006, before the final deadline of July 27, 2011. This week, the Department of Justice also released supplemental guidelines for SORNA which address, among other things, public notification of juveniles adjudicated delinquent for serious sex crimes, the posting of sex offender information, such as email addresses and other Internet identifiers, and reporting of international travel requirements.
Department Announces Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force Strategy and Operations E-Guide — In recognition of National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month proclaimed by President Barack Obama, OJP this week announced the release of an Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force Strategy and Operations e-Guide. The e-guide provides resources and guidance to support effective Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force operations, including task force formulation and structuring, and strategies and lessons learned from the anti-trafficking field. It also provides a centralized link to trainings and other tools and resources. The e-guide was prepared by OJP's Bureau of Justice Assistance and Office for Victims of Crime.