Pimps and johns out to sell youngsters into prostitution in Arizona are getting the message they’re not welcome in our state. That’s the aim behind billboards in the Phoenix area as Super Bowl 49 approaches. The billboards are coming up ahead of the big game, usually when underage sex trafficking spikes in the hosting area.

State Attorney General Mark Brnovich, speaking with other children’s advocates at a press conference Tuesday,  is among those warning traffickers his office will track down and prosecute pimps and johns prostituting minors.

The billboards enable citizens to call a hotline if they see anything suspicious. They also let the exploited children know that someone is dedicated to finding and rescuing them. That number is 888-373-7888. Brnovich says previous campaigns have been successful in stepping up reporting of criminal activity once people were made aware of the problem.

Carolyn Jones, who was prostituted at the age of 15 and became a drug addict, now reaches out to the kids who’ve been forced into that way of life. She assures victims that she’s providing a voice and a shoulder to cry on, something she wished had been available for her during that horrendous period of her life.

Over 50 billboards in the Phoenix area will remain up for the next eight weeks, which will include the Super Bowl period and thereafter.

–Barbara Villa