MasoniCh.I.P. / Family Safety Day

Masonichip Child Identification Program

Beginning in 2008, Jerusalem Lodge has participated in the MasoniCh.I.P. child identification program, held under the auspices of the Grand Lodge of Ontario. We now hold our clinic in conjunction with and support of the Family Safety Day, held on the last Saturday in September at the Bowmanville Fire hall.

This event, sponsored by the Clarington Emergency and Fire Services, is an ideal location for such a clinic. The kids have lots of things to do and see while waiting for their turn. To date, we have issued over 1,000 free child identification kits.

Firefighters putting out a fire during a live burn demonstration
Firefighters putting out a fire during a live burn demonstration

Missing children in Ontario

“A missing child is every parent’s worst nightmare. Of the 67,000 cases of missing children reported, Ontario had the highest proportion per capita at nearly 20,000. Children Find Ontario’s caseload of missing children consists of runaways, parental abductions, stranger abductions, and children who have become lost or separated from their families.

Parental abductions are on the rise, taking place at an average of four per week in Ontario. Hundreds of incidences have occurred involving children being abducted/lured away via the internet. The issue of missing children affects families from all walks of life and our success is dependent on a shared responsibility for the search, recovery and prevention process.” – Child Find Ontario

A sigh of relief for Ontario parents

No parent wants to think that one of the 55 children who are reported missing to police in Ontario every day could be theirs. MasoniCh.I.p, a comprehensive, non-invasive child identification program, started in 2007 to help Ontario parents be prepared for the unthinkable—at a time when seconds can count.

“MasoniCh.I.P. is one of the most comprehensive child recovery and identification programs in the nation.” -The National Center for Exploited and Missing Children

The MasoniCh.I.P. program consists of five major components:

  • digital photographs
  • digital video
  • digital fingerprints
  • vital child information, and a
  • dental bite impression or intra-oral swab for DNA

The photographs, video, fingerprints, and child description are burned onto a CD that’s compatible with Amber Alert. Combined, this five-part process provides an important, time-sensitive recovery tool for authorities.

The kits are prepared for free at events hosted across the province. It takes only 10 to 15 minutes to collect, process and provide the information to the parent or guardian. The only item retained by MasoniCh.I.P. Ontario is the signed permission slip.

Thanks to the support of Ontario Masons, more than 42,000 kits have been distributed since 2007.

“Even though it is our hope that no parent should ever need to use their kit, Masons remain committed to providing this comprehensive program ‘just in case’.” – Ray Dobbs, Program Director, MasoniCh.I.P.

Visit the MasoniCh.I.P. website.