Next of Kin & ID R Kids programsPolice
Division of Police
4095 Center Road
Brunswick Ohio 44212
The Brunswick Police would like residents to know of two important safety programs being offered by the State of Ohio. The first is ID R Kids, an identification system which allows parents to register their child’s photo and information into a state database, in order to assist police in the event of an abduction or injury. The second is a Next of Kin initiative which allows persons to list loved ones to be contacted in case of an emergency.
ID R Kids
When a child is missing or abducted, time is of the essence. To improve the odds of a live recovery, getting that child’s photo and abductor information out to other police agencies and the public through the news media is critical. Likewise, when we or someone we are close with experiences a life threatening accident, illness or other medical emergency that lands them in the hospital, getting prompt notification to that person’s next of kin can save a life or simply allow some precious time with a loved one before they expire. To help improve how we protect our children; and, notify next of kin when a person is hospitalized with a critical medical emergency, the Ohio Department of Public Safety (ODPS) has taken the lead through its BMV to make this happen. Ohio’s ID R Kids initiative is a recent statewide effort to encourage all Ohio parents and guardians to bring their minor children in to their local Ohio Deputy Registrar to secure a state ID for them. The process is simple: bring the child with birth certificate and social security card to any one of Ohio’s 214 Deputy Registrar License agencies. A state ID is the only ID that puts the child’s photo, name, address, date of birth and next of kin contact information in the BMV database so only police may immediately access this life saving information if the child is missing; abducted or injured. Parents or guardians can be quickly contacted and if necessary, the child’s photo sent to police and news media outlets statewide or nationwide if an Amber Alert is warranted. The cost is $8.50.
Next of Kin
Ohio’s new Next of Kin (NOK) registry is a perfect compliment to ID R Kids. In its first three weeks of operation, NOK has seen more than 30,000 Ohioans with an Ohio driver license or state ID, register their next of kin contact information. People may sign up for it online at www.ohio.bmv.gov. It allows all registrants to list up to two trusted persons to be identified in the BMV database as Next of Kin. Only police can access the NOK information; it costs nothing to register; takes maybe 3-4 minutes to sign up for; is protected information not subject to public records requests; and, allows police to gain crucial information from the registrant’s NOK. The end result is NOK’s ability to reduce police time spent trying to locate next of kin. “In an emergency situation, time is critical to saving lives,” said ODPS Director Henry Guzmán. “This is yet another way we can all work together to be better prepared to respond, or help the public respond, to an emergency.” The success of both ID R Kids and NOK will depend on securing greater participation by raising public awareness. It may take a few years to get the majority of Ohio’s 8.6 million persons holding an Ohio driver’s license or state ID card to sign up for this voluntary registry, however the effort will be well worth it. Getting parents or guardians to secure a state ID for their children is already showing results with a 3 percent increase in state IDs being issued to children in 2008 over 2007. Saving lives and improving public safety are the fruits of ID R Kids and the Next of Kin registry and represent the overall mission of the Ohio Department of Public Safety.