Wisconsin Attorney General announces emergency alert addition to Silver Alert system

Local News

Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul speaks during the We Are the 80% rally on Thursday, Nov. 7, 2019 at the State Capitol in Madison, Wis. Kaul said in an interview Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2021 that he would not investigate or prosecute anyone for having an abortion should the state’s currently unenforceable abortion ban go into effect. (Steve Apps /Wisconsin State Journal via AP, File)

(WFRV)- When a loved one goes missing, especially an elderly loved one, it can be a very stressful situation for those wishing them to come home safely.

On Tuesday, December 21, Attorney General Josh Kaul, in collaboration with the Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM), released details on a new alert system that will be used in assisting in Silver Alerts cases.

According to the release, the WEM will begin utilizing “Wireless Emergency Alerts.” These alerts are similar to Amber Alerts used when young children go missing or are in danger. A.G. Kaul explains how these alerts will help to continue pushing their mission of locating people who have gone missing. Kaul says, “this enhancement… will allow us to make more people aware that they may be able to help bring someone nearby and on foot to safety.”

Officials explain the parameters of this WEA for future Silver Alert cases; if the subject of the alert is believed to be on foot and has been missing for less than 24 hours then this alert will be broadcast. The message will be sent in the five-mile radius from where the subject was last seen between the hours of 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.

WEM explains that for these alerts to be broadcast to people in the area there are certain requirements for the Silver Alert subject. The following are requirements for a Silver Alert message to be released;

  • Person must be 60-years-old or older
  • Believed to have Alzheimer’s, Dementia
  • Believed to have a permanent cognitive impairment that could pose a threat to that person’s health or safety
    • This impairment is also suppose to be the potential reason said person is missing
  • The Silver Alert must be made with 72 hours (three days) of the subject’s disappearance
  • There must be enough information about the person that can create a distinguishable image so people could Identify that subject easily in public

Officials want to remind citizens that if a loved one goes missing to alert your local law enforcement and if you want you can always reach out to the Wisconsin Department of Justice Silver Alert program at (608) 266-1671.

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