Louisiana Clearinghouse for Missing and Exploited Children

Each of the 50 states, plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Canada, and the Netherlands, provides resources for missing children, their families, and the professionals who serve them. These resources are referred to as missing-child clearinghouses.

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) maintains a liaison with each missing-child clearinghouse and helps ensure they are familiar with the many resources available through NCMEC. NCMEC provides missing-child clearinghouses with training, technical assistance, and vital information to better assist them in handling missing-child cases.

The missing-child clearinghouses are diverse in their delivery of services because of state and territorial mandates and the variety of agencies in which they exist. The primary areas of focus for missing-child clearinghouses are networking, information dissemination, training development and delivery, data collection, and provision of technical assistance in cases of missing and sexually exploited children. NCMEC and missing-child clearinghouses closely work together to help ensure a comprehensive approach to child protection.

History of the Louisiana Clearinghouse for Missing and Exploited Children

Created in 1985 by the Louisiana Legislature, LACMEC is the central repository of information about missing and exploited children. Parents, guardians, law enforcement, and National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) provide the clearinghouse with details and photos to send across the state and nation. This information is sent to local law enforcement agencies to assist in the recovery of these missing children.

LACMEC also gives parents and guardians important information on the role they play in helping their children return home and available local and national resources.

What to Do If Your Child Is Missing

Contact your local law enforcement IMMEDIATELY!
Often the first 24 hours are the most critical for locating a missing child.

  • If the child is missing from home, begin by thoroughly searching the house. Be sure to check any places a child could crawl, hide, and possibly fall asleep.
  • If your child disappears when you are away from home -- at a shopping center, for example -- notify the manager of the store and the security office. Request assistance in finding your child. Then telephone the police immediately.
  • If your child has run away, contact friends of the child; chances are good they've confided their plans to a friend. This information should be provided to law enforcement.
  • When talking with law enforcement, try to stay calm. Identify yourself, and give your location. Ask that an officer be sent to take a report on your missing child.
  • Be prepared to give descriptive information on your child, including name, height, weight, and date of birth. Also provide information on specific identifiers such as eyeglasses, braces, pierced ears, and a description of the clothing your child was last seen wearing.
  • Listen carefully to the instructions of the police and respond to their questions.
  • Request that your child be immediately entered into the National Crime Information Center's (NCIC) Missing Person File. This will assist other law enforcement agencies in identifying your child if they are located in another community. An NCIC entry for a missing child is required by state and federal law.
  • Contact the Louisiana Clearinghouse for Missing and Exploited Children by calling 1-800-434-8007.
  • Contact the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children by calling their nationwide toll-free number 1-800-THE-LOST.