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Canada’s first permanent kid fingerprinting station launches in Calgary


A free fingerprint identification program is now available at Charlesglen Toyota, an auto dealership in Northwest Calgary. It is Canada’s first permanent digital safety fingerprint ID station for kids and is sponsored by Operation Kidsafe.

Operation Kidsafe is a program that aims to provide free fingerprint ID kit to parents, which could be of great use in case of emergencies. Mark Bott, a former Toyota-Dodge Dealer and child advocate, founded the program. Mark Bott is also the President of Image Events Inc., which creates customized programs for auto dealers, banks, and credit unions.

In an article in Canada’s Sun newspaper chain, Bott shared the reason behind why he was driven to initiate a child protection program. About 15 years ago, he saw an image of a missing girl on his television. “She looked just like my daughter,” said Bott. “It absolutely rocked me.”

Many have already utilized the fingerprint ID program, including four-year old Kamden Shayluk. Shayluk’s father, Kyle, noted that he did not hesitate to participate with the free fingerprint ID service. Kids being safe is always the best thing, It’s dangerous out there,” he said.

The fingerprints that are taken are then provided to parents who will have the liberty to forward them to the police, for instance, if their child goes missing. They can also share it with schools or hospitals depending on the need. The parents were also given an information kit at the auto dealership that will help boost safety precautions for their children.

“It’s about having a safer community and you’ll definitely have that,” said Bott.

Dealer spokesperson David Richardson also said that the staff of Charlesglen had been trained to operate the fingerprint identification equipment and the auto dealership has donated its space and time to the effort. “It was a good fit. It’s a great way can thank the citizens of Calgary for making our business such a success,” Richardson said.

Will the advent of Canada’s first permanent child fingerprint ID program be able to mitigate child abductions?

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