“We are here to help – that’s our role is to help other agencies with missing, we’re here to help missing people themselves, we’re here to help families.”
In response to the missing persons crisis, a swathe of excellent collaborations and charitable organisations have risen to fill the gaps in public services and support police and families at risk of or living with missing persons cases.
Bethan Hodges of the UK charity Missing People chats with Caroline and Karen about how the 1986 case of Susie Lamplugh led to the foundation of the charity. She talks about the importance of strong community networks to protect vulnerable individuals and why it’s important that public services and people all work together to share information.
She explains how the Herbert protocol is an example of how concerned parties can register information with authorities in advance, should vulnerable individuals with dementia be at risk of going missing.
Bethan explains why charities can be essential in bridging the gap between police and families too, by facilitating conversation to build trust, or even between missing people and their families via the Textsafe network.
You can call or text the Missing People helpline on 116000 for support, advice and guidance.
Bethan is the Partnerships, Policy and Projects Manager at Missing People.
Bethan oversees relationships with all police forces in the UK and works closely with many other partners to ensure that missing people and their families are supported during a missing investigation.
Bethan has set up two collaborative advisory groups at the charity Missing People. The Police Advisory Group (PAG) has Police representatives from English, Welsh, Scottish and Northern Irish forces. Bethan has also recently set up the Missing People Social Work Online Advisory Group (SWOAG). Both advisory groups seek to collaboratively discuss issues around missing and inform our wider work with partner agencies.
Bethan is qualified in Suicide Intervention and has a particular interest in suicide prevention during missing investigations and the safeguarding of adults with mental health issues.