Wisconsin, Milwaukee to target human traffickers leading up to and during DNC

NOW: Wisconsin, Milwaukee to target human traffickers leading up to and during DNC

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The 2020 Democratic National Convention is expected to bring thousands of people to the Milwaukee area next summer. Like other high profile events, there are concerns about human trafficking.  

“They’re the eyes and ears on the ground," said Milwaukee Alderwoman Milele Coggs. 

Alderwoman Milele Coggs wants to make sure the city is prepared to take on human trafficking. She said major events can see an uptick in illegal activities especially at hotels.

“They’re the ones who see who’s checking into the rooms, who’s standing in the lobby, they’re the ones who see these people,” said Alderwoman Coggs. “So the more they know and are educated about how to identify what might likely be human trafficking, the better.”

“We work daily as in seven days a week preparing for this event, and it’s something that we take very seriously, and this is something that we’re trying to get on top of,” said Nicholas DeSiato from the Milwaukee Police Department.

Josh Kaul

Milwaukee’s not alone. Attorney General Josh Kaul was in Milwaukee Thursday, Jan. 9 to talk about a new human trafficking report released by the Wisconsin Department of Justice.

“There is often human trafficking that happens in connection with those events,” said AG Kaul. “I want to make it very clear that this is something we take very seriously, that law enforcement is going to work to prevent.”  

The report shows law enforcement agencies are inconsistently reporting cases of human trafficking -- something city and state leaders are working to address before the DNC.

“Human trafficking and all of you present here around this issue signifies what the community can do and the progress that can be made only if all our cross sections work together,” said Kent Lovern, Chief Deputy Assistant Attorney Milwaukee County

The Milwaukee Police Department will be hosting classes next month to help hotel and area workers better identify the signs of human trafficking.

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