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PUBLIC COMMENTS PAGE

 

In accordance with the SWGDAM Bylaws (Section V.C.5), SWGDAM will make any new or revised guidance or standard document(s) available for public comment for a minimum of 30 days. Generally, SWGDAM attempts to review its guidance documents within 5 years of their issuance and is usually actively revising at least one of its guidance documents at any given time. SWGDAM strongly encourages the forensic DNA community or other interested group to comment on the SWGDAM documents currently in this stage of development. Upon receipt, these comments will be forwarded to the appropriate SWGDAM Committee for consideration and may be incorporated into the final document considered for approval by the SWGDAM Membership.  

Alternately, SWGDAM may publish a response to a specific suggestion or recommendation on its FAQ Page for general information purposes. SWGDAM will make all reasonable efforts to advise the forensic DNA community of those documents currently available for public comment. SWGDAM strongly encourages all interested parties to regularly monitor SWGDAM.org for the guidance document(s) or standard document(s) currently available for public comment. Please use the contact portal below for providing comments on the SWGDAM document(s) available for public comment.

SWGDAM Documents Available for Public Comment

 

Databasing and Forensic DNA Quality Assurance Standards (QAS)

The proposed changes to the 2020 Quality Assurance Standards for DNA Databasing Laboratories (Databasing QAS) and 2020 Quality Assurance Standards for Forensic DNA Testing Laboratories (Forensic QAS) are now available for public comment.  These proposed changes would: (1) revise targeted elements of Standard 5: Personnel, Standard 8: Validation, and Standard 15: Audits; (2) include additions to the Forensic QAS to allow for the future use of expert systems; and (3) add new Forensic QAS Standards 18 and 19 and Databasing QAS Standard 18 to consolidate current laboratory Rapid DNA requirements and to allow for the future use of Rapid DNA on forensic (casework) samples and in locations outside of the DNA Laboratory. If approved by the FBI, these changes have a targeted effective date of July 2025.

 

The proposed changes to the 2020 Databasing and Forensic QAS being provided for public comment have been tracked with blue text within the marked-up electronic copies of the 2020 Databasing QAS and 2020 Forensic QAS.

 

SWGDAM Proposed Changes to the 2020 Databasing QAS for Public Comment

 

SWGDAM Proposed Changes to the 2020 Forensic QAS for Public Comment

 

Please use the QAS Public Comment Form - 2024 below for capturing comments and submit it using the File Upload function of the Comment/Suggestion Portal on the Public Comment Page.  For submission of the QAS Public Comment Form – 2024, the SWGDAM Document, Page#/Line#, Comment, and Suggested Revision/New Language fields may be marked N/A with only the Submitted By and Email fields completed with the uploaded file inserted as an attachment into the File Upload field.

 

QAS Public Comment Form – 2024

 

These documents will be available for public comment through Friday, July 5, 2024.

SWGDAM Guidelines for Missing Persons Casework

 

The 2014 SWGDAM Guidelines for Missing Person Casework provides guidelines for the processing and analysis of missing persons casework. DNA profiles developed from unidentified human remains and unidentified living persons may be compared directly to references from a family at the request of the investigating agency when the facts of the case lead to a preliminary hypothesis of identity. Alternatively, the DNA profiles from remains without a presumed identity can be compared to a DNA database of missing persons and family reference samples, such as the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS).

 

Key Concepts contained in these guidelines include:

 

  1. Important considerations for skeletal samples which may not be routine evidence for most laboratories.

  2. Examples of family trees are provided to assist laboratories in determining from whom samples should be collected in a missing persons case.

  3. The types of CODIS searches performed for missing persons casework are specified as well as considerations in resolving and reporting associations.

  4. Additional resources include laboratories that have developed missing person programs as well as other organizations that are dedicated to solving missing person cases.

 

This document will be available for public comment through Friday, July 12, 2024.

 

SWGDAM Guidelines for Missing Persons Casework

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