It’s an all-too-familiar story that, unfortunately, rarely gets the media attention it deserves: Every 40 seconds, a child is reported missing, and nearly 50 percent of them are African American.
But thanks to Gaétane Borders and Janice Lowery, communities throughout America have a broadcast outlet that focuses solely on helping the parents of those children bring them home safely.
As hosts of BlogTalkRadio’s Peas in Their Pods, Gaétane and Janice have been taking to the airwaves each week since November 2007 to disseminate and gather information on cases of missing kids of color, while also helping prevent child abuse.
Among their latest efforts has been bringing attention to the case of Phylicia Barnes, a 17-year-old honors student and track star from North Carolina who was in Baltimore visiting relatives when she suddenly disappeared on the afternoon of Dec. 28.
“Phylicia’s siblings—Deena, Kelly and Brian—spoke for nearly 90 minutes on an Internet radio site called blogtalkradio.com,” reports The Baltimore Sun. “The show, Peas in Their Pods, is designed to call attention to minorities who are missing but not showcased by the traditional media.
“On the show, Deena, a pharmacy technician studying to be a midwife, said she met her half sister about 10 years ago at a family reunion in Baltimore. They reconnected two years ago on Facebook, and Phylicia visited Baltimore several times.
“Deena said on the Internet show that the people who had keys to the apartment were her, her ex-boyfriend, who was in the process of moving out, and the ex-boyfriend’s young cousin,” the paper adds of the special edition of Peas in Their Pods, which aired Jan. 18.
“On Friday, Phylicia’s charter school in North Carolina, Union Academy, announced a $25,000 reward, money raised from an auction.”
During the family members’ interview, Brian told Gaétane, “There’s a lot of different reports going out and a lot of people have a lot of questions as to what’s going on with my sister’s case. So I thought it would be a good idea for us, the family, to clear up what we know so far and what we have learned.”
Authorities are asking anyone with information about Phylicia’s case to call the tipline as (855)223-0033.
Click here to read the full Baltimore Sun story.
Click here to sample Peas in Their Pods.