If you are the employer of the hostage’s relatives, you are urged to treat them with compassion as they will be under immense stress and are likely to exhibit symptoms of trauma. The hostage’s family are as much victims of this crime as the hostage himself/herself. The family may be suffering some of the shock and grief of a bereavement, but without the “closure” that can come with mourning. It is uncertain how long a kidnap may last or how the crisis might develop, and it is best to be as flexible as possible.
If you are an organisation that has other connections with the hostage or their family – for example, a bank or an education provider – you are urged to handle the family’s needs with sensitivity and discretion. Kidnapping is not a frequent crime which means that there may be a lack of provision for it in your standard policies and procedures. However, the hostage’s family are as much victims of the crime as the hostage, and handling their needs and the needs of the hostage with tact and compassion is good corporate social responsibility. Hostage International can offer you help and support in identifying needs and finding people to help.