Child Identification Cards - for Your Child's Protection
By Joan Whetzel
Police Departments across the country provide a program, called Kid ID, which provides parents with a photo ID card for their children. However, this is no ordinary photo ID card. This photo ID is set up to help locate lost or abducted children and provide medical treatment for them in case of emergencies.
Police Department Kid ID Program
Depending on how busy the police station is, parents may be able to obtain their Kid ID cards on a walk in basis. However, if tge police department is busy, or the family have several kids (3 or more) they may find that it's better to make an appointment so that the Department has all of the ID kits they need on hand. This will make the ID card processing go much more quickly.
The Kid ID card is connected to a national database, which can be accessed by the FBI or by any Police Department in the United States. The identifying information - vital statistics, photograph, and fingerprints, contact information for parents, grandparents, and guardians, as well as allergies, medications and medical insurance - are collected and uploaded to the Kid ID website along with the card ID number, which parents can access in order to keep the information updated..
The Process for Creating the ID and ID Account
The process takes about 20 minutes per child. Two photos are taken - one profile and one facing the camera. A third photo is taken of the child with oneor both parents. The only photo appearing on the card is the one of the child facing the photo. The other photos are only filed on the website profile.
Each child's height and weight are measured and recorded. Then both thumbs and forefingers are fingerprinted digitally, which provides a clearer fingerprint than the inkpad method. Additional identifying information about the child's physical description is also recorded, which includes: birthday, age, height, weight, hair color, eyecolor and birthmarks, allergies, medications, medical conditions. All contact information is gathered - name, address, names of mother and father, and contact information for both parents and the grandparents, or whoever the parents wish to be contacted.
Once the Information Is Collected
Once all of the information has been collected, it is uploaded to the KidID.org website. A password, chosen by the parent(s), is typed in by the parent. The police officer is not privy to this password. It can be used to access the child's profile so that the parent can update photos as well as changes in the child's height, weight and any medical issues. A photo ID containing the front facing photo and the physical description of the child is printed out and laminated. They provide parents with 2 cards for each child, ideally one for each parent. Though, a single parent may choose to carry one with them and either place the second card in a safe place or give it to a third party for safekeeping. This card can be presented to any police department, who can then use it to connect with KidID.org to download the information to aid in the search for a missing or kidnapped child.
Purchasing ID Kits
There are a number of children's ID kits on the market, among them: Kid Safe ID, My Precious Kid, and Easy ID card which offer a variety of options. Most begin with a basic kit to create a Photo ID with your children's vital statistics. There are upgrades available for parents to gather a fingerprint sample and a DNA sample, and an upgrade to create a medical release for each child. So far I haven't found where these kits can be registered with an online database. However, they are useful for the child to carry with them at all times as they can hold all the information needed for emergency medical treatment as well as for police to use to locate parents or guardians from the information printed on the card. These kits can be purchased for somewhere around $10 for the basic kits, with additional costs for the upgrades.
The Kid ID cards available through the police departments cost nothing other than the 20 minutes or so for the ID process. For more information either call, walk in or check out the website for your local police department. Also peruse the Kid ID website at: http://kid.id.org/
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