CANBERRA, Nov.16,2017-- Australia's Justice Minister released a report Wednesday saying that half of Australian missing persons are teenagers.
Michael Keenan, Minister for Justice and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Counter Terrorism, released the National Missing Persons Research Report, the first of its kind in Australia for a decade.
The researchers from the Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) studied more than 305,000 missing persons reports made to Australian police between 2008 and 2015.
They found that half of all reports in 2015 alone related to people aged between 13 and 17 years of age, making people in that group four times as likely to disappear as anyone else.
Young people were also more likely to disappear more than once, the study found, with 42 percent of people who went missing three or more times in the Northern Territory (NT) falling in the 13-17 age bracket.
"These statistics are alarming," Keenan said in a media release on Wednesday.
"Our law enforcement agencies and their partners are doing excellent work to tackle the high number of missing Australians evident by most missing persons reports being resolved within 48 hours."
On average 38,000 people go missing in Australia, 95 percent of which are located within one week of the report being made.
Data showed that males were more likely to go missing in every age group except 13-17. Missing persons with a mental illness or those who commit suicide were most likely to be middle-aged men.
The state of Victoria reported the highest rate of elderly people, people suffering from mental health issues and people likely to attempt self-harm going missing.