By Paul Kurtz
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Outdoor advertisers have teamed up to launch a billboard campaign to battle human trafficking.
The billboards feature a young boy, a toll-free hotline number and the message, “where does human trafficking happen?”
About 50 of them are being displayed across highways from Erie to Philadelphia.
Hugh Organ, Associate Executive Director of Covenant House, says trafficking is on the upswing in Philadelphia, but he believes the billboards will provide a powerful tool for his group’s street outreach team.
“There are kids being sold on street corners in Philadelphia every single day of the week,” Organ says. “There are kids on the internet being sold. There are massage parlors where women are being forced to provide sex in the back of massage parlors every day in the city of Philadelphia. I think this will drastically increase the number of tips that are coming in to the hotline in this area.”
In addition the billboards, State Senator Daylin Leach is pushing for a bill in Harrisburg that would force certain businesses in Pennsylvania to post a small sign advertising the hotline number.