The Safeguarding Briefing Network Principles
- SBN Partners are committed to helping missing people
- SBN Partners don’t share missing person briefings in public places, only with staff and volunteers
- SBN Partners protect the privacy and confidentiality of any missing person who is included in the briefings they receive
- Missing People will only send briefings when they are relevant to agencies signed up to the SBN
- Missing People will always provide advice and support to agencies who may have identified a missing person
- Missing People respects the rights and choices of missing people, and the agencies signed up as SBN Partners
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If you recognise someone from a Missing People briefing
If the person is a stranger to you and you are not providing support directly to them through your own organisation: You should not approach the person directly but instead report a sighting to our helpline on 116 000. We will discuss what action should be taken and may pass this information to the police.
If you have not had training in safeguarding we don’t recommend you engage with the missing person directly as these conversations can be really difficult.
If you are providing support to the person through your service: You can explain to them that they have been reported missing and discuss their options with them. There is further information about how to have this conversation below.
You can let them know about Missing People and share our contact details. They can call, text or email our helpline for free on 116 000 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. All conversations are confidential, non-judgemental and can be anonymous. You can also direct them to our website www.missingpeople.org.uk where there is lots of advice and guidance for anyone who is missing.
How to tell an adult they’ve been reported missing
- Make sure you are in an area away from other people. Having a conversation about missing can be confusing and upsetting for some people.
- Reassure them that they are not in any trouble.
- Explain that they have been reported missing because somebody is concerned about them and does not know where they are. This may have been a friend, relative or a person who was previously supporting them. Your client can find out who has reported them missing.
- You could follow the link to the missing poster to show the person that he really is being looked for – but take care this might spook some people.
- Explain that an adult has the right to be missing and that although the police are involved it is not a crime to be missing.
- To stop being considered a missing person the police need to complete a ‘safe and well’ check. This process does not take very long and can usually be done in less than 10 minutes. The police just need to see the person to check that they are OK. If a safe and well check does not take place the police will continue to look for them.
- Please also reassure them that the police will not pass details such as their whereabouts on to their family against their wishes.
- If they would like to know what to do then they can ring the charity Missing People on the special short number 116000 (even without any credit on their phone). Missing People is completely confidential and will only do what the missing person wants them to do. It’s all up to the missing person.
- The missing person might want to reconnect with a relative they have lost contact with. Missing People can offer free tracing service to help reconnect the missing person with a loved one.
It is possible that the person was missing but has been reported found already – the police simply haven’t told Missing People. If this is the case then do encourage them to contact Missing People so that they can confirm this with the police and get the record corrected.
You are under no obligation to report that you have found someone but if you do want to, you can call 116 000 to report a sighting or provide any information you have. We will pass the information on to the police who may then want to do a safe and well check as outlined above. You can also call us in confidence to talk the situation through before you decide what to do.
Please feel free to ring us on 116000 for any further guidance.
The welfare of the missing person is at the heart of everything we do.
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