Royal Mail adds digital missing people alerts to mail rounds

Royal Mail and Missing People are partnering to deliver missing people alerts to postal workers on their handheld devices.

Chloe Green | 10th Jun 19

Charity Missing People is partnering with Royal Mail to deliver ‘missing people alerts’ via their handheld digital devices.

Since the alert system was launched, 120,000 postmen and women in the UK have received alerts via their handheld digital devices that a missing person is believed to be in their area. 212 alerts for missing people have been issued to Royal Mail’s hand-held PDA Network, and 164 people have been found safe and well.

Now Royal Mail employees will receive images of high-risk people on their hand-held digital devices along with physical descriptions, as part of a major update to the partnership between the postal service and charity.

Royal Mail postmen and women partnered with Missing People in 2014, after a child went missing on postman Vincent Micallef’s round in London. The experienced made him realise that postmen and women could play a big role in locating missing people during their day jobs.

A person is reported missing every 90 seconds in the UK. The search to finding people needs to happen quickly.

Royal Mail Director of Public Affairs & Policy, David Gold, said: “Postmen and women are uniquely well placed to keep an eye out for people when they are out and about in their local community. Including pictures in our established alert system will help to make it easier for us to play a part in reuniting more people with their families and loved ones.”

“Families waiting for news have told us how much of a comfort and encouragement it is to know that postal workers are helping in the search for their loved ones. We believe that this new update will give Royal Mail’s frontline staff the best chance possible to recognise vulnerable missing people in their communities, helping reunite them with their families,” said Jo Youle, Chief Executive of Missing People.

Missing People operates a free and confidential helpline which provides support to those who are struggling away from home and families which are struggling to handle the disappearance of a loved one. The charity’s helpline operates 24 hours a day.

Want to stay on top of the latest tech news in the third sector?

Get top insights and news from our charity digital experts delivered straight to your inbox three times per week.