Missing persons and social exclusion

Laura Christine Kiepal, Peter J Carrington, Myrna Dawson



The concept of social exclusion is used to explore the relationship between people and groups who are socially and economically disadvantaged and the phenomenon of going missing. Police data about missing persons are compared to census data to determine whether groups who experience family dissolution, labour market exclusion, and other forms of disadvantage and social exclusion are overrepresented among missing persons compared to the general population. The analysis shows that disadvantaged youth, women, Aboriginal people, people who are not in the labour force, unemployed people, and homeless people are all overrepresented among missing persons. People occupying the intersections of multiple high risk categories are at particularly high risk of going missing. Linking missing persons with the concept of social exclusion shows that social and economic disadvantage lead directly and indirectly to peoples’ disappearances. (133 words)


Missing persons; social exclusion

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