Minister Fitzgerald welcomes EU funding allocation for 116000 Missing Children’s Hotline
23rd May 2012
Frances Fitzgerald TD., Minister for Children and Youth Affairs has today welcomed the allocation of €150,000 by the EU Daphne Programme to the ISPCC for the set-up and initial operation of the 116000 Missing Children’s Hotline in Ireland, as supported by a Project Team established by Minister Fitzgerald.
Minister Fitzgerald stated “I am delighted with the progress being made towards establishing the 116000 Missing Children’s Hotline in Ireland. The allocation of EU funding to the ISPCC is another very welcome step in this process and is very timely given that this Friday (May 25th) is International Missing Children’s Day.”
The ISPCC have advised that they will be making an application for funding to government for the balance of the set-up costs. Minister Fitzgerald stated “I will consider any funding application in conjunction with the Departments and agencies involved in the Hotline Project Team which I established; and I hope that any additional funding requirements can be met.
Under EU telecoms rules agreed in 2009, the 116000 number is reserved in all EU member states for a missing children hotline. Last last year Minister Fitzgerald established a Project Team to oversee the establishment of the Hotline. The Project Team included representatives of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs, the Department of Justice and Equality, ComReg and an Garda Síochána.
On the 1st of February 2012 Frances Fitzgerald TD, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, confirmed that a licence to operate the 116000 Hotline for Missing Children has been allocated to the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC). Comreg, allocated the 116000 number to the ISPCC following an examination of the issues involved in conjunction with the Project Team.
Minister Fitzgerald added: “I wish to commend the commitment and interest shown by the ISPCC in seeking to progress provision of this Hotline.”
The Minister advised that work will continue over coming months with the support of the Project Team, to get the hotline up-and-running. In the meantime the ISPCC has put in place a temporary response that is currently heard if one rings the 116000 number. The response advises callers to report any missing child to An Garda Síochána. If the caller is a child calling for assistance they are advised to contact the ISPCC.