Wake Forest police launch program meant to protect those with disabilities, dementia disorders

Wake County News

Photo from Wake Forest police

WAKE FOREST, N.C. (WNCN) – The Wake Forest Police Department is introducing a new, confidential program meant to better protect those with disabilities and dementia disorders.

The “Take Me Home Program” is, according to a press release, “designed to protect Wake Forest children, adults and the elderly with disabilities, such as autism, Down syndrome or Alzheimer’s and other dementia disorders, who go missing and may be unable to communicate who they are and where they live.”

The idea behind the program is that, according to the Alzheimer’s Association, about six out of 10 people living with dementia will at some point wander away from their homes. When those with disabilities or dementia disorders wander from their homes it can be difficult or nearly even impossible in some cases for them to communicate and/or find their way home.

The Take Me Home program is a “free, voluntary and confidential database offered, managed and maintained by Wake Forest Police for Wake Forest residents,” the release said.

The database is only accessible to law enforcement through the Wake Forest Police Department.

Police will get a person’s basic information, a current digital picture, family emergency contact information, and any other information that could help police get them home if an officer encounters them. That information will be put in the database.

Once in the database, if a caregiver tells police that their loved one is missing, officers will immediately have access to that person’s photo and other helpful information that they can then quickly distribute to other police, law enforcement, or first responders.

The release states that the system can also work in reverse. If police find someone wandering in the town and that person is unable to find their way home or communicate effectively, police can check the database to see if they are enrolled in the program.

Caregivers can register family members with special needs by visiting this website and filling out the form.

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