AMBER Alert (AMBER Alert Malta)
AMBER Alert Malta was officially launched on January 10th, 2017, by the Minister of Home Affairs and National Security, Carmelo Abela, and the Malta Police Force. AMBER Alert Malta is the result of a cooperation between the Ministry of Home Affairs and National Security in Malta, the Malta Police Force and AMBER Alert Europe, the European Child Rescue Alert and Police Network on Missing Children.
An AMBER Alert in Malta allows police officers to seek the assistance of the public when investigating child abduction cases. With the use of the cross-border AMBER Alert, based on the Dutch AMBER Alert system, not only Maltese, but also endangered missing children and AMBER Alerts in neighboring countries, such as Spain, Greece and Hungary, are automatically displayed on the website of AMBER Alert Malta. AMBER Alert Malta is developed by AMBER Alert Europe. Visit: www.amberalert.com.mt.
Technical Tools available for dissemination:
Social media, Radio and TV, RSS feed, website pop-up, AMBER Alert poster, SMS and email. Maltese AMBER Alerts are also automatically displayed in the newsfeeds of all Facebook users in Malta.
The criteria for launching an AMBER Alert in Malta
The Malta Police Force is responsible for issuing AMBER Alerts, for which they have strict criteria:
- The child is (very likely) abducted by an unknown person or persons or the child is missing and its life is in imminent danger;
- The victim is a minor (under 18 years of age);
- There is enough information about the victim to increase the chances of the child being found by means of an AMBER Alert, such as a photo, information about the abductor or the vehicle used during the abduction;
- The AMBER Alert is issued as soon as possible after the abduction or disappearance of the child.
Malta has a partnership with Facebook, allowing them to display Maltese AMBER Alerts in the newsfeeds of all Facebook users in Malta.
Actors involved and their role in a national AMBER Alert:
- Malta Police Force – investigation and decision to launch the alert
- AMBER Alert Malta
An overview of children who are currently listed as missing in Malta can be found on the Maltese AMBER Alert website.
Parts of the system can be used to help find endangered missing children. A missing child is considered endangered when there are substantial indications that the child is at high risk of harm and/or in immediate danger, and rapid action is required. The police can then decide to inform citizens about the case.
For endangered missing children, parts of the AMBER Alert system are used to attract citizens’ attention. Information about these cases can be shared nationally or can be sent to specific regions or target groups (e.g. railway personnel or the transport sector).