Quebec’s runaway children: a concern for us all

Quebec’s runaway children: a concern for us all

November is Runaway Alertness Month across Canada, and Enfant-Retour Quebec once again wants to alert the population about the seriousness of the problem.

They are young, resourceful and seeking freedom. Not a day goes by without a dozen teenagers leaving their family homes without telling their parents, according to recent data.

The most recent report on missing children in Canada indicates that there were 3,570 runaway kids in the province in 2012. This is an average of ten daily disappearances. However, statistics show a steady decline in the number of reports over the last five years. In 2008, there were 5,707, or 60% more compared to 2012.

Boys escape from parental supervision more than girls in Quebec, as there were 1992 who left their homes without warning last year compared to1578 girls. In this regard, Quebec stands apart from the rest of Canada. In the rest of the country girls represent 58% of total runaways, an average that seems to be consistent for all other provinces.

Although there are fewer recently, the Children’s Network considers the problem very serious as many runaways end up in bad places and even resort to suicide. Because there are so many, the public doesn’t take the matter as seriously as it should. A runaway child usually has very little or no money and is exposed to hunger, cold and orientation and can be an easy prey for predators looking to offer them shelter and food for other services.
……………………………………………….. Staff Writer


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