Within the last week, nearly a dozen teens of color have gone missing in the Washington D.C. area.
According to the D.C. Police Department, more than 10 Black and Latinx teens have been reported missing. Sadly, the only mention of their disappearance comes from a series of tweets including several messages from the police department’s Twitter account and a small number of online news sites, including The Root and Teen Vogue.
Amongst the teens missing, it’s been reported that 13-year-old Taylor Innis has been found in “good health.” Missing teen Antwan Jordan has been found safe.
As Teen Vogue pointed out in a recent article about the disappearances, there’s often comparison of the amount of attention that young people of color receive versus young, attractive white women.
The phenomenon entitled “missing white woman syndrome,” is a term referring to the media’s fascination with missing women who are white, young, pretty, and often from middle-or upper-class backgrounds. This theory is attributed to the late PBS reporter, Gwen Ifill who speculated that the media has an apparent lack of regard for missing people of color.
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Fox5 DC reported earlier this year that there’s been a renewed spotlight on the number of missing young girls in the D.C. area. In February alone, there were 15 active cases at one time, drawing concerns that there may be a larger issue of sex trafficking at hand. According to The U.S. Department of Justice, human trafficking has become the second-fastest growing criminal industry in the U.S., with children accounting for roughly half of all victims.
To report any information on the missing teenagers, call the Washington, D.C., Police Department at (202) 727-9099.
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