Photo and Flier Distribution
Chapter 4

Key Points
  1. During the first 48 hours, it is critical that recent pictures of your child, descriptions of physical traits and personality characteristics, and facts pertinent to the disappearance be given to law enforcement, the news media, and nonprofit organizations and agencies.

  2. Distribute only recent pictures that resemble your child. Remember that posters and fliers will show only the head, neck, and top of the shoulders.

  3. Choose representative videos or home movies for airing on television to show viewers your child’s appearance, mannerisms, and voice quality.

  4. Never give away your only copy of a picture or video.

  5. Be both creative and aggressive in getting your child’s posters put up in heavily trafficked areas across the country.

  6. Use publicity gimmicks, such as buttons, T-shirts, and bumper stickers, to etch your child’s face in the public’s memory.

  7. Prepare a press kit for distribution to national news and talk shows and magazines.

  8. Extend your search to the Internet, which will allow you to send your child’s picture to a wide variety of organizations via e-mail more quickly and less expensively than you could by fax.

  9. Plug into available photo distribution services, including NCMEC, which can coordinate national media exposure, send a broadcast fax to its national network of law enforcement agencies, contact America’s Most Wanted requesting that a public service announcement be aired on your behalf, and post photos of your child on its Web site.

  10. If your child has been missing for a long time, distribute age-progressed photos and updated case information to refresh people’s memories and renew interest in your child’s plight.


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When Your Child Is Missing: A Family Survival Guide OJJDP Report • May 2004