The Historian's main responsibility is to acquire one copy of each essential document generated during the Community Response Plan. A copy must be made of every poster, volunteer roster, registration form, missing child poster tracking form, phone log, search operations summary, photographs used and taken, etc. These copies must be securely and safely retained by the Historian. This is because the records are a valuable resource and likely to be of assistance to achieving a positive end to the investigation. It is also because the records are likely to contain personal information about individuals involved in the search effort and it is important that such information does not fall into the wrong hands.
Things for the Historian to consider:
Records must be stored daily in a secure fashion.
Records can be stored electronically or on paper.
Records will be easier to secure if they are electronic. However, ensure that these records are backed up onto an external hard drive, or burnt onto CDs.
Paper documents can be tracked in a ledger with labelled folders placed in storage boxes. This is called the “TIP Method” and is used by the police.
When the child is located, the Historian must find a safe place to store all records. Destroy sensitive information by shredding it after a copy of all of this information is sent to the police.
It is advised that the Historian also keeps a daily journal of all of the Community Response Plan Team’s activities. This will require talking to everyone involved and getting a summary of their daily activities.
All original photographs should be turned over to the Historian for safe keeping. The Historian will ensure that any personal items or photographs will be given back to the searching family through the Family Liaison.