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Missing or out of contact client
In all missing persons cases you are advised to first contact the police and file a missing persons report, listen to the police advice given and act accordingly.
When is an adult considered to be missing?
For most adults to be considered missing by the police, they must be absent from their residence for a minimum period of 24 hours. For some adults it will be necessary to start a search much sooner than 24 hours.
For people attending social care day services or living in social care services accommodation there is a procedure which staff will follow to search for someone and also alert police and other relevant persons.
Safeguarding vulnerable adults
All adults should be able to live free from fear and harm and have their rights and choices respected. In North Yorkshire we operate a zero tolerance to all forms of abuse and are committed to preventing the abuse of adults and responding promptly when abuse is suspected.
For more information, including how to report suspected abuse, see the safeguarding vulnerable adults page.
When is a child considered to be missing?
Every situation is different and there are no set rules about when a child should be considered missing. If in doubt about whether to formally report a child missing (for example, when a teenager fails to return home after a time they have agreed), contact the police. They will be happy to discuss this with the parents or concerned adults and provide advice about what to do.
For a child known to social care services, children's centre staff and foster carers have clear rules about when to report children missing. Likewise, any child who is on a Child Protection Plan and who is believed to be missing is subject to a clear reporting procedure.
All children have a right to be well looked after and protected from harm. The children and young people's service investigate all cases when people are worried that a child may be at risk of being harmed or is not being looked after properly.
For more information, including how to report suspected abuse, see the child protection page.