The Minister of National Security, the Hon. Wayne Munroe gave an update on the Marco Alert System which is used to notify the general public of missing persons.
He said, “if you look at some of the alerts where persons have been missing for more than a couple of days, a parent might have had an experience with a child who has gone and come back in a day or two and its now five days, six days so they’re now concerned to say that the child may have suffered harm. And so you have to established that harm is possible. Cause if you sent off a Marco’s Alert for every person who hasn’t returned at the time they’re expected then an alert may be going off every five, ten minutes. It desensitizes the public and it would defeat the purpose of the alert system.”
Munroe went further speaking to what happens before an alert is issued. “Over the course of time in practice when we have had civil cases, criminal cases people are supposedly missing and then they end up being deported back to The Bahamas from the US where they were. And so there are differences, you look at the age of the person. When people become adults then there are inquiries you have to make. When they are very young children then unless you know that there is a non custodial parent involved who you can direct the police to, you may be alarmed more quickly the younger the child is,” he said.
The alert system, named for 2011 kidnap and murder victim Marco Archer, 11, was launched in 2022.