Mayor Barney: Litter campaign promotes ‘mindful behavior,’ Arizona pride

A new effort by Don’t Trash Arizona addresses the economic, safety and health effects of freeway litter along regional and state highways.

“Arizona is our home. Love it. Don’t trash it!” is the catchphrase that will be heard and seen throughout the state.

Don’t Trash Arizona is a litter prevention campaign implemented by the Maricopa Association of Governments in cooperation with the Arizona Department of Transportation. The new campaign updates the program that began in 2006.

“This campaign tells the story that our state is a place to take pride in and keep clean,” stated MAG Chair Gail Barney, mayor of Queen Creek. “The campaign uses a tongue-in-cheek approach to promote mindful behavior with a sense of pride and ownership in Arizona.”

The messages target not only general littering behavior but also cigarette butt litter and dangerous debris from unsecured loads. Using yellow road stripes over black pavement, the graphic visuals emphasize:

  • Arizona is not your ashtray.
  • Arizona is not your trashcan.
  • Arizona is not your junkyard.

Arizona is our home. Love it, don’t trash it!

Queen Creek Mayor Gail Barney

The campaign targets males aged 19-24, often found to be the worst litter offenders, according to a release. “The strategy is to use attention-grabbing content to engage this audience on the platforms where they spend most of their time,” the release stated.

Litter costs Arizona taxpayers $4 million each year to clean up roadways, is unhealthy for the environment and causes accidents on roads, according to the release.

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