June, 21

Office of Justice Programs Announces the Children’s Justice Project to Identify Children’s Remains

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Office of Justice Programs Announces the Children’s Justice Project to Identify Children’s Remains

Washington, D.C. – On May 22, the Office of Justice Programs’ Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) announced the launch of the “Children’s Justice Project,” to accelerate the identification of children and youth who have been found deceased but have not yet been identified. According to the National Institute of Justice’s National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, an estimated 1,000 cases of unidentified children remain unresolved across the country.

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) will commit about $2 million of its OJJDP funding to bolster efforts to identify as many of these children and youth as possible through the Children’s Justice Project. OJJDP will coordinate with NCMEC and state and local law enforcement, and partner with its colleagues across the Department of Justice on this effort.

NCMEC has a successful track record of providing forensic expertise and on-site technical assistance to families, law enforcement agencies, child-serving professionals, and non-governmental organizations involved in cases of child abduction and exploitation.

OJJDP Administrator Liz Ryan announced the new project at the 41st annual National Missing Children’s Day commemoration. “It is fitting that OJJDP and NCMEC are collaborating to launch a new project this year, during NCMEC’s 40th anniversary and our 50th [anniversary],” said Administrator Ryan. “Currently, there are more than 1,000 children whose remains have been found but have not been identified. We want to help name them and return them to their families, communities, and loved ones.”

About the Office of Justice Programs

The Office of Justice Programs provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance, and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime; advance equity and fairness in the administration of justice; assist victims; and uphold the rule of law. More information about OJP and its program offices – the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Institute of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office for Victims of Crime and SMART Office – can be found at

About the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act. Signed into law on September 7, 1974, the Act established OJJDP to support local and state efforts to prevent delinquency and improve juvenile justice systems. Through its divisions, OJJDP sponsors research, program, and training initiatives; develops priorities and goals and sets policies to guide federal juvenile justice issues; disseminates information about juvenile justice issues; and awards funds to states to support local programming.


CONTACT: OJP Media at [email protected]

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