Published: 09.25.2006

Coalition plans anti-smuggling campaign
YUMA - A coalition of law enforcement agencies and other groups opposed to human trafficking plans to be highly visible in Yuma, a busy corridor for illegal entries from Mexico.

Alert, the Arizona League to End Regional Trafficking, is launching a statewide campaign Oct. 1 with billboards, television and radio spots dealing with themes such as child labor, sex trafficking and migrant workers.

Alert's aim is to urge law enforcement agencies, emergency rooms and urgent care centers, and farm labor contractors to look for signs of trafficking that may not be apparent on the surface, said Richard Galindo, a program specialist for Alert.

If the public is aware and knows what to look for, it could lead to the arrests of more smugglers, Galindo said. "It's going to get the word out, and hopefully we can see more clients," he said of the campaign. "If they see telltale signs, that might give us a clue and we can investigate further."

The project was funded by $150,000 in federal grant money, said Galindo.