PAPS, RCMP bring awareness to Saskatchewan Missing Persons Week

Herald file photo.

Both the Saskatchewan RCMP and Prince Albert Police Service are spreading the message about missing persons.

April 28 to May 4 marks the 11th annual Saskatchewan Missing Persons week in the province. The theme of the week this year is “Stories, not statistics”. The aim of the theme is to bring to light the story of people who go missing and the investigative work that goes on behind the scenes to help them return home.

In Prince Albert, electronic billboards located at the intersection of 15th Street West and 2nd Avenue West, as well as the 1800 block of 2nd Avenue West will be displaying images of missing persons and sharing their stories. The list of cases includes Happy Charles, who was last seen on April 3, Ernestine Kasyon, who was last seen on Dec. 6, 1989, and Drew Ballantyne, who has been missing since June 29, 2022.

“There are many different circumstances that can lead to a missing persons report being made” says constable Brendan Sanford, Saskatchewan RCMP missing persons coordinator in a press release. “Those circumstances decide which of the Saskatchewan RCMP’s internal and partner resources are activated. However, the goal always remains the same, to bring Saskatchewan’s missing home.”

Options available to RCMP after a missing person is reported include police dogs, remotely piloted aerial vehicles and search and rescue teams

In 2023, 25,33 individuals were reported as missing to Saskatchewan RCMP. That includes 550 missing men, 450 missing women, and 1,150 missing youth.

According to an RCMP press release, many missing persons are located quickly. The Saskatchewan RCMP Missing Person Coordinator is a dedicated police officer who monitors all missing persons investigations in Saskatchewan RCMP jurisdiction. Long-term missing persons cases that are mot suspicious are taken over by the Saskatchewan RCMP Missing Persons Coordinator. Suspicious cases are transferred to the Historical Case Unit who liaise with family and loved ones, and continue the investigation.

RCMP investigators use everything from police dog services to remotely piloted aerial systems to search and rescue (SAR) units to help find missing individuals.

Law enforcement encourages the public to share any information that may help in a missing persons case, even if you think it may be insignificant. Information can be reported to local police or anonymously to Crime Stoppers 1-800-222-8477 or