Thursday, June 21, 2018
News Roundup

Young ad pros, Junior League of Tampa combat child sex slavery

TAMPA — Residents might start seeing a few odd sights downtown. Purple blindfolds around landmarks like the José Marti statue in Ybor. A giant circle with an X through the middle lit up on the side of a city building. Removable graffiti covering walls downtown.

These guerilla-style advertising tactics are part of the recently launched Ad 2 Tampa Bay pro-bono campaign for the Junior League of Tampa titled "Abolish." The league has dedicated the past year to raising awareness about human trafficking in Tampa Bay, a $31 billion industry worldwide.

In September, Ad 2 Tampa Bay — a nonprofit organization of advertising professionals 32 and younger — named the Junior League the recipient of its pro-bono public service campaign for 2013-14. Together, on behalf of the Community Campaign Against Human Trafficking Tampa Bay, they launched a public awareness campaign to combat child sex slavery.

"The problem is people don't know this is actually happening," said Mary Ellen Collins, public affairs chairwoman of the Junior League. "Everyone was sharing information and talking about what they were doing, but there was no groundswell."

The problem has lived in cities throughout the United States for decades, but only recently has awareness risen enough to permeate multiple layers of the community, including law enforcement, prosecutors, community advocates and politicians.

As service providers and law enforcement band together to address the issue, the Ad 2 campaign hopes to bring a united front to the fight. By using one color, one slogan and one website, the group hopes to stop the fragmentation of information and direct the community to one common message.

"We wanted to do something impactful but that wasn't something that's been done in the past," Ad 2 Tampa Bay president Taryn Cashmere said. "We didn't want the typical photos of the young girls behind bars and in chains that's been done across the U.S. already."

Just as people associate pink with breast cancer awareness, the ad campaign is hoping to take ownership of the color purple. The word "abolish" connotes slavery, an easier term for people to understand than human trafficking. And the style of the art harkens to street graffiti and a harsher image.

"Originally we were charged with (raising awareness of) child sex trafficking, and we ran into the problem that people don't really know what trafficking is," said Kelsey Farnell, co-creative director of the public service team for Ad 2 Tampa Bay. "We went for a really urban, raw, grungy feel for the campaign just to try to reach the streets and the younger population."

The campaign will also employ traditional forms of advertising — billboards, public service announcements and print ads. Those will focus on statistics particular to child sex trafficking in Tampa, Collins said, and will be easily adaptable for other cities across the state should the campaign take off.

The campaign will encourage victims and those who suspect a crime is being committed to text "BEFREE" for help. Texts go directly to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center's 24-hour hotline, a program of the Polaris Project, which combats forced sex acts and labor.

The campaign will roll out through this month and intensify during January, national Human Trafficking Awareness Month. The Junior League and its partners will host events Jan. 10-18, including a kickoff rally and a 5K run.

"It's not just a campaign, it's a grass roots effort," Collins said. "It's a living, breathing thing that won't end when the campaign ends."

Caitlin Johnston can be reached at [email protected]

Comments
Florida eliminates Texas Tech at College World Series, faces Arkansas for title-round spot

Florida eliminates Texas Tech at College World Series, faces Arkansas for title-round spot

OMAHA, Neb. — JJ Schwarz hit a two-run homer and Florida built enough cushion to survive Texas Tech's six-run outburst over the seventh and eighth innings to eliminate the Red Raiders from the College World Series with a 9-6 win Thursday night....
Updated: 11 minutes ago
Missed time a good mental reset for Rays’ Matt Duffy

Missed time a good mental reset for Rays’ Matt Duffy

ST. PETERSBURG — Missing all of 2017 might have been the absolute worst thing for Matt Duffy.Frustratingly idled as he eventually recovered and rehabbed from ongoing left heel issues, he couldn't play the game he loved, couldn't show the Rays o...
Updated: 11 minutes ago
Timeline of investigations, suspensions and allegations involving Jameis Winston

Timeline of investigations, suspensions and allegations involving Jameis Winston

The NFL will suspend Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston three games without pay to start the regular season for violating the league's personal conduct policy. The suspension could be increased if he fails to meet certain undisclosed requirements expect...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Jameis Winston suspension means Bucs will turn to Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB

Jameis Winston suspension means Bucs will turn to Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB

TAMPA — The news of Jameis Winston's suspension to start this season likely means the Bucs will have veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick stepping in at quarterback for the first three games of the regular season.Fitzpatrick took over as the starter for th...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Kevin Knox to Knicks makes NBA history locally

Kevin Knox to Knicks makes NBA history locally

More than a year ago, Kevin Knox stepped across the stage at the Straz Center to receive his high school diploma.On Thursday, the former Tampa Catholic star was on basketball's biggest stage as he fulfilled his lifelong goal of making the NBA.Knox wa...
Updated: 1 hour ago
2018-19 schedule unveiled: Lightning opens with five straight at home

2018-19 schedule unveiled: Lightning opens with five straight at home

NHL schedules all balance out at the end, but the Lightning will open 2018-19 with five straight home games and end the season with its last four on the road.The Lightning released its schedule Thursday evening for the upcoming season, with all sorts...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Without a first-rounder, Lightning still could have busy draft weekend

Without a first-rounder, Lightning still could have busy draft weekend

The Lightning doesn't have a first-round pick in this weekend's draft, but that's not to say the weekend couldn't be busy for general manager Steve Yzerman and his front office.The Lightning sent its top draft pick to the Rangers in February as part ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Next move is simple for the Bucs: Get rid of Jameis Winston

Next move is simple for the Bucs: Get rid of Jameis Winston

Trade him. Waive him. Cut him.Whatever.Just get rid of him.Jameis Winston should never play another game for the Tampa Bay Bucs.Plain and simple, he's a bad guy and the Bucs should have nothing more to do with him.He already will miss the first three...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Charles Krauthammer, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and intellectual provocateur, dies at 68

Charles Krauthammer, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and intellectual provocateur, dies at 68

Charles Krauthammer, a Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post columnist and intellectual provocateur who championed the muscular foreign policy of neoconservatism that helped lay the ideological groundwork for the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, died...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Rays journal: Jake Bauers proves he’s up to speed on bases

Rays journal: Jake Bauers proves he’s up to speed on bases

ST. PETERSBURG – Rookie 1B Jake Bauers has impressed at the plate and in the field since his June 7 promotion.Also, with his hustling on the bases."I knew he played hard; everybody said that at every level,'' manager Kevin Cash said. "I di...
Updated: 3 hours ago