Florida’s Highway Heroes campaign is shifting into high gear ahead of Super Bowl LV to enlist more teammates in the fight to end human trafficking.
Last week, Attorney General Ashley Moody and the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles ( FLHSMV) launched phase two of the Highway Heroes campaign, created to enlist commercial truck drivers in the fight to end human trafficking. The joint effort between Moody’s office and FLHSMV is funded through a U.S. Department of Transportation grant issued to FLHSMV to help train drivers and raise awareness about human trafficking on America’s roadways.
“In preparation of next month’s Super Bowl in Tampa, we are shifting our Highway Heroes campaign into high gear. Truck drivers play a vital role in the fight to end human trafficking. With more than 500,000 licensed commercial drivers in Florida, I am hopeful that this campaign will help us rescue victims and save lives. Thank you to all our Highway Heroes, who have been our eyes and ears on the road. With your support and participation in this lofty mission, we can end these heinous crimes and build a Stronger, Safer Florida,” Moody said.
FLHSMV Executive Director Terry Rhodes said, “Florida’s truckers go above and beyond to serve our communities every day, and it is no surprise that so many drivers have eagerly stepped up to join in the fight to end human trafficking in our communities. Our goal is simple: to train as many Florida truckers as possible on spotting and reporting human trafficking – all to achieve our vision of a Safer Florida. We greatly appreciate the support of Attorney General Moody and each of our partners in this important and life-saving effort.”
Phase two of the Highway Heroes campaign includes a strategic multimedia outreach effort targeting the half a million Commercial Driver’s License holders in Florida, as well as additional outreach to drivers in the Tampa area during the week leading up to Super Bowl LV. Digital messages aimed at CDL holders through strategic ad placement encourages participation in training on learning how to spot, report and end this horrific crime. As part of the campaign, Moody and FLHSMV will continue to push these messages through the end of National Human Trafficking Prevention Month, leading right up to Super Bowl LV, which will be played on Feb. 7 in Tampa.
Last October, Moody and FLHSMV launched phase one of the Highway Heroes campaign. The initial phase involved a social media campaign, outreach materials mailed to Florida’s CDL holders and a new website with resources to educate drivers on how to identify victims and report suspected human trafficking.
In less than three months, since the launch of phase one, the Attorney General’s Office and FLHSMV’s delivery of educational content and training has resulted in 3,323 Florida commercial truck drivers becoming Truckers Against Trafficking-certified—adding to the growing mobile army of more than 1 million transportation professionals nationwide that are able to assist law enforcement in the recognition and reporting of human trafficking.