California Creates Nation's First 'Ebony Alert' to Find Missing Black Children |

California Creates Nation’s First ‘Ebony Alert’ to Find Missing Black Children

A new California law will create an emergency alert system to help find missing Black youth and women between the ages of 12 and 25.

via: NPR

Tens of thousands of Black youth and women go missing across the U.S. each year. But their cases hardly ever grab national headlines, let alone receive the attention and resources dedicated to finding them.

The state of California is taking steps to address that, creating a new statewide alert system to help locate and bring attention of missing Black children and young Black women — being the first in the nation to do so.

Senate Bill 673, signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Sunday, will create the “Ebony Alert” system for missing Black children and young women. When activated, the proposed system – similar to Amber or Silver alerts — would inform people of missing Black children and young women between the ages of 12 to 25.

The alert system will make use of electronic highway signs and encourage the use of television, radio, social media and other platforms to spread information about the missing persons alert.

The new alert system will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2024.

State Sen. Steven Bradford, who introduced the measure, praised Newsom’s support in signing the bill — and he emphasized the disparity between resources and coverage in searching for white people and those of color across California.

“Today, California is taking bold and needed action to locate missing Black children and Black women in California,” Bradford said in a statement announcing the bill signing.

“The Ebony Alert will ensure that vital resources and attention are given so we can bring home missing Black children and women in the same way we search for any missing child and missing person,” he added.

On average, more than 600,000 people are reported missing in the U.S. each year, according to data from the National Crime Information Center.

In 2022, up to 546,000 people were reported missing across the U.S. — with 36% of those cases identified as Black youth and women.

And while Black people make up 13% of the U.S. population, nearly 40% of missing persons cases are people of color, according to the Black and Missing Foundation.

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