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Should BC have 'Silver Alerts' for missing seniors?

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Despite some recent high-profile cases, there’s no rush in BC to introduce an Amber Alert-style system for seniors who go missing.

It’s often called ‘Silver Alerts’ and the system is in place in a number of American States. The alerts let the public know about missing seniors, often dementia patients.

Ontario has a similar program; it isn’t a full alert system, but rather one that is focused on prevention. When a senior goes missing, police view it as an emergency. An information kit is prepared in advance for seniors to help police find a senior with dementia. If an alert is required, one is issued, though it is not called a ‘Silver Alert.’

Dave Sinclair of the BC Seniors Living Association says it’s worth a good look here in this province. “When seniors go missing, everybody would be alerted and maybe we might have been able to avert some of these missing seniors that we’re seeing in the news right now.”

He adds he doesn’t think it would hinder our current Amber Alert system. “In fact, I think it would be easier to put the seniors system into effect because we already have the Amber system here,” he tells us.

The province is keeping an eye on how it’s being used elsewhere, while the RCMP, in a statement, notes it already has a number of techniques in place.