Special Needs Registry

The Special Needs Registry is a Greendale Police Department project in partnership with the community promoting communication and giving first responders quick access to critical information about a registered person with special needs.
The Registry can provide first responders with emergency information, detailed physical descriptors, known routines, favorite attractions, contact information and special needs of the individual. The information can assist first responders in communicating with, responding to a residence of, or dealing with an emergency involving an individual with special needs.

The goal of the program is to give first responders quick access to critical information about a registered individual with special needs in the community in an emergency situation.

We recommend annual registration to keep your form updated. It is the responsibility of the person with special needs or their guardian to resubmit the form. It is recommended that you resubmit on the individual's birthday to make it easier to remember.

In order to register, complete the form, print it and submit it in person or by mail at the Greendale Police Department, 5911 West Grange Avenue, Greendale, WI 53129. Completed forms may also be emailed to: greendalepd@greendalepolice.org.

Special Needs Registration form (PDF form to print and complete in ink)

1) Can individuals with other communication disorders participate with this registry, or is it only for those who fall within the autism spectrum?
The registry has been developed with the intent to serve all members of our community who may find their communication abilities challenged or ineffective when interacting with first responders. Examples of this are persons with developmental disabilities, Alzheimer's or Dementia patients, or other endangered individuals. The Greendale Police Department encourages all endangered persons to submit a registration form. Please contact us at(414) 423-2121 for more information.

2) If I don't live in Greendale, can I still register my child/dependent adult on the registry?
If you do not live in Greendale, but your child/dependent adult comes to Greendale on a regular basis (e.g. for work, school daycare, etc.), then you should register. If the individual is not in Greendale regularly, there would be more benefit to register in the municipality in which they reside or work. Please contact us at (414) 423-2121 for more information.

3) As soon as I send in the registration, will the information be immediately available for response by first responders?
No, the information from the registration form will need to be entered into our computer system to capture all relevant information which may take a few days. Please contact us at(414) 423-2121 for more information.

4) Who has access to my child's profile?
Greendale Police and Fire personnel who require this information in the performance of their duties will have access to the information. There are strict regulations with respect to accessing and disseminating information. The sharing of this information with other law enforcement agencies during an emergency can be helpful when a person is registered in Greendale but wanders off in another jurisdiction. Please contact us at (414) 423-2121 for more information.

5) After my child/dependent adult is registered, and if there is an incident, do I need to do something to notify the Police?
When contacting the Police Department during an emergency with your child/dependent adult, it is preferable that you let the Police know that the individual is already registered. In doing so, this information will be immediately disseminated to responding squads without having to ask the parents/guardians during a high-stress situation. Please contact us at (414) 423-2121 for more information.

6) How will this registry help if my child/dependent adult goes missing?
If the individual goes missing, information about his/her appearance, the most likely places where he/she would go to, as well as triggers, stimulants and de-escalation techniques will be sent to every first responder in the area to look for the missing person.

If the child/dependent adult is located wandering on the street and is incapable of effectively communicating his/her name to the Officer, a computer check of the neighborhood, coupled with the physical appearance, may allow us to identify the individual more quickly. This will then allow us to use contact information to connect with the parents/guardians. Please contact us at (414) 423-2121 for more information.

7) What guarantees do we have that the interaction between our child/dependent adult and the Police will be positive once he/she is registered?
There is no guarantee of a positive outcome with this registry. What the registry allows is the ability for first responders to have necessary information faster to begin searching. Also, if an Officer comes across a "wandering" person who is unable to communicate, the Officer, if they recognize the condition, can have the database queried for persons on the registry that live in the area.

What is important to stress is that simply having a person registered with the registry is not going to change the Police responses in every instance involving an individual with special needs. Police will act according to procedure depending on circumstances. An individual with special needs can still be arrested. In that case, being registered will assist law enforcement in contacting the correct people. Please contact us at (414) 423-2121 for more information.