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NEWS: “Silver Alert” Legislation Clears Senate State Affairs Committee

For Immediate Release: February 21st, 2013

“Silver Alert” Legislation Clears Senate State Affairs Committee

         JUNEAU – Senate Bill 36, a bill creating a public notification system for missing seniors and vulnerable adults, passed out of the Senate State Affairs Committee this morning. The bill’s sponsor, Senator Johnny Ellis (D-Anchorage), hailed the committee’s endorsement.

         “We have a rapidly growing senior population and a large number of adults with developmental disabilities here in Alaska, and I am pleased a strong bipartisan agreement is emerging on the need for a coordinated response system to quickly find these Alaskans when they go missing,” said Senator Ellis. “I am honored to work on behalf of the many advocates for senior citizens and the disabled who have spoken up and written letters of support in favor of this effort.”

         Similar to the “Amber Alert” system for missing children, SB 36 creates rapid response and notification plans for law enforcement to activate when a vulnerable adult goes missing. The bill’s protections would apply to senior citizens with dementia, adults with developmental disabilities, veterans suffering from PTSD, and other disabled adults who go missing.

         Thirty-eight other states have “Silver Alerts” or related missing persons programs. The Alaska Department of Military and Veterans’ Affairs would work in conjunction with the Alaska Department of Public Safety to develop procedures for using both statewide and local media outlets to broadcast information to the public about missing vulnerable adults.

         SB 36 now moves to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

For more information, contact Nathan Zencey at (907) 465-3704 or



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