According to the United States Department of Justice, about 100 children are kidnapped by strangers each year in the United States. In 80 percent of these cases, the department’s reports show the initial contact between the kidnapper and the victim was within one-fourth of a mile of the victim’s residence.
In an effort to increase awareness of child safety, Augusta State University will host the program A Missing Priority: Human Rights for Children & Youth on Wednesday, Oct. 24, at 7:30 p.m. in the Jaguar Student Activities Center Ballroom. The keynote speaker will be Emmy Award-winner Ken Wooden, president emeritus of Child Lures Prevention.
“Child abduction is a pressing problem that cannot be overlooked or ignored,” said Bill Reese, event coordinator and professor in the Department of Sociology, Criminal Justice, and Social Work. “That is why we are grateful to have Mr. Wooden come to share his prevention strategies with the community.”
Wooden, a child safety expert and published author, serves as the Child Lures Prevention’s Ambassador for International Child Safety Efforts. He has shared his expertise with the U.S. Congress and appeared on a variety of news programs discussing the importance of child safety. His research on missing and exploited children was honored by the White House, and his child safety programs have been implemented in many public schools across the country. Wooden also is a former investigative reporter for NBC News, ABC News, 20/20, special correspondent to the Chicago Sun-Times, freelance journalist, and a television producer. In 2010, he was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize Lifetime Achievement Award for his book Weeping in the Playtime of Others: America’s Incarcerated Children.
Learn more about Wooden and Child Lures Prevention at http://www.childluresprevention.com/. This event is hosted by ASU’s Department of Sociology, Criminal Justice, and Social Work and by ASU’s Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences.