Saturday, April 28, 2007

CHIP program for children

Masons underwrite kids’ ID program


Parents in Northeast Michigan now have the opportunity to use state of the art technology to identify their child.

The Alpena Hopper Lodge 199 of the Michigan Masons is providing the organization’s child identification program — MI CHIP — locally.

“The neat thing about our program is it costs absolutely nothing for the Masons to come in and set up a CHIP program,” said Bill Daugherty, past master and lodge coordinator of the CHIP program.

Children identified through the program go through a series of stations where information is gathered, such as a dental impression, a cheek swab for DNA, digital fingerprinting, photographing, videotaping and voice recognition.

“We are really proud of it. Nobody even comes close to the magnitude of the identification process of what the Masons are doing,” Daugherty said.

The entire program is underwritten by the Masons Grand Lodge of Michigan, so there is no cost to parents or to organizations hosting the program. The only request the Masons have is that the organization provide a few volunteers to type information into a computer program.

“We’ll be glad to put on a program anywhere we can, we just need a door opened,” Daugherty said.

According to Daugherty, the Masonic fraternity always has involved itself in kids programs, and the MI CHIP program sends a clear signal to perpetrators of crimes against children not to mess with kids in Northeast Michigan.

“We can have a picture of a kid on Amber Alert within two hours,” he said.

All the information collected on a child is burned onto a disc and sent home with the family. The only thing kept by the Masons is the permission slip, signed by the child’s parents or legal guardian.

“We can’t screen that kid without mom or dad’s permission and they have to be present to give us that permission,” Daugherty said.

Parents are instructed to store the dental impression and cheek swab in the freezer to preserve them.

“Ten years down the line that (DNA sample) can be broken open and given to a K-9 unit, and that dog can pick up the child’s scent,” Daugherty said.

Carol Krueger of Alpena brought her three-year-old son Andrew and five-year-old son Toby to the Masons’ first event during the Month of the Young Child celebration at the Alpena Mall last weekend.

“We found out about it from the Partners in Prevention and we decided to do it,” she said. “If my kids were ever missing I would have something to help find them faster.”

Ashley Worth of Alpena said she has had her four-year-old daughter Kelsey fingerprinted before but has never done anything this extensive.

“I work at the courthouse, so I know there’s a lot of problems in the area,” she said.

The Masons will conduct MI CHIP events during kids day at Alpena Alcona Area Credit Union on Bagley Street June 14 and again at the Alpena County Fair in August.



I find it disturbing that they have entitled the program CHIP.  I wonder what the next step they would like to take this to.

1 comment:

gokings13 said...

what if they take that DNA sample and clone my kid?

no thanks.

i too find it curious they use the word 'CHIP'.

that sounds like the 'mark of the beast' to me!!


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