Source: European Parliament
According to the Missing Children Europe federation, a child goes missing in the EU every two minutes. Unfortunately, however, the full extent of the problem, which may be attributed to abuse, violence, crime, neglect, conflict or poverty, is difficult to assess, mainly because of the lack of reliable and comparable data. A 2013 Commission survey (1) pointed to a lack of uniform data collected in each Member State and called on them to keep reliable statistics and take measures to facilitate comparative analysis.
It must be remembered that
the CFREU and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child require ‘the best interests of the child’ to be paramount when measures are taken in this area.
Furthermore, the problem of children going missing is not confined to national borders and must therefore be addressed by means of European support structures, exchanges of best practice, coordinated cross-border cooperation (2) and reliable comparable data on the exact number of missing juveniles.
In view of this:
1 Can the Commission say which of the recommendations to Member States have not so far been implemented?
2 What steps has it taken to ensure the compilation of reliable and comparable data by Member States?
3 What measures is it taking to ensure that Member States meet their responsibilities when it comes to raising awareness of the problem, deployment of the necessary resources and the provision of effective missing children hotlines?