News


Florida celebrates six year anniversary of Silver Alert Program

10/8/2014
 
Today, Florida celebrates the sixth anniversary of the Silver Alert program.  Silver Alerts are activated statewide shortly after a senior with Alzheimer's or related dementia goes missing. Since Silver Alerts began in 2008, 909 alerts have been issued and 87 seniors have been found after an individual saw a Silver Alert, recognized the missing senior and called law enforcement.    
 
“The Silver Alert system has proven to be a vital law enforcement asset,” said FDLE Commissioner Gerald Bailey.  “By signing up to receive Silver Alerts, you could be law enforcement’s key to saving a missing senior.”
                                                                  
“It is estimated that more than 480,000 Floridians are living with Alzheimer’s Disease or a related disorder. The Silver Alert program is a critical tool to protect these vulnerable members of our families and communities,” said Department of Elder Affairs Secretary Charles T. Corley. “It is especially important that we continue to support programs like Silver Alert as Florida’s elder population continues to grow. We are proud of this program’s success so far and of the commitment of all of our partners to safely bring home missing elders."
 
Florida’s Silver Alert program was initiated by an executive order signed on Oct. 8, 2008 and was codified into law by the Florida Legislature in 2011.  The system aids local law enforcement in the rescue of an elderly person with an irreversible deterioration of intellectual faculties (such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease) who goes missing.  The plan calls for the broadcast of information via email, the media and highway message signs (when a vehicle is involved) to enlist citizens in the search for an endangered senior.  Once the person has been recovered, the Department of Elder Affairs, in coordination with the Area Agencies on Aging and Florida’s Memory Disorder Clinics, works to provide follow-up assistance to the senior. 
 
As a result of receiving reports about Silver Alert subjects interacting with staff and patrons at retail outlets, FDLE worked in partnership with the Florida Lottery to expand the Silver Alert program this year.  Images of missing seniors now display on lottery ticket terminals at convenience stores. Since implementation in February, seven seniors have been identified through the use of lottery ticket terminals.   
 
Citizens can sign-up to receive Silver Alerts via email at www.floridasilveralert.com
 
For Further Information Contact:
Gretl Plessinger, Samantha Andrews or Steve Arthur
FDLE Office of Public Information
(850) 410-7001
 
Ashley Marshall
DOEA Press Office
(850) 414-2142