Parental child abduction stands as the foremost cause of missing children on a global scale. According to estimates from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the United States alone reports more than 27,000 missing children cases annually, with parental child abductions accounting for over 13,000 of these distressing instances. This form of abduction transpires when one parent wrongfully takes, conceals, or
withholds a child from the other parent, unjustifiably denying access without valid cause.
Established in 2005 following the parental child abduction of 6-year-old Ian Castillo,
Helpspan.org (Help Stop Parental-child Abduction Now) has been tirelessly working toward the creation
of enforceable anti-parental child abduction legislation in every state. The primary objective is to address
the foremost root cause of missing children worldwide.
In 2008, the Helpspan Parental Child Abduction petition successfully culminated in the nation's inaugural
parental child abduction law. This legislation ensures protection for every child from birth until a court order
is in place or until they reach the age of 18 ( majority). It also facilitates the reporting of all missing children,
including runaways facing danger, into the National Missing Persons Clearinghouse, enabling the issuance
of Amber Alerts when needed.
Each state's petition incorporates punitive measures for parental child abductors and their accomplices, along with protective provisions to safeguard children from perilous situations. In specific jurisdictions, the law also recognizes Parental Alienation Syndrome and unwed parental rights, streamlining child custody proceedings by circumventing time-consuming and costly paternity testing.
Parental child abduction exacts a profound toll on victims and their families, imposing significant emotional and financial burdens that can persist for years, and in some cases, a lifetime. Psychological trauma is inherent in all cases, with physical abuse occurring in some instances. Our mission is rooted in halting the scourge of parental child abduction for the well-being of all children. Through our legislation efforts, we aim to put an end to this form of abuse.
Presently, eight states have adopted parental child abduction legislation. However, our goal remains to enact this vital legislation in every state. We earnestly request your support in achieving this objective. If you are interested in sponsoring this legislation in your state or require assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.
please contact us.