Washington Health Dept. Receives Community Backlash Over Yakima Billboard

Barsaba Taglieri
Luglio 27, 2017

The Washington State Department of Health has apologized after receiving several complaints about an anti-marijuana billboard it bought in Yakima. The complaints didn't even relate to how much Washingtonians love their weed.

Social media's condemnation of the billboard was swift, with many calling the ad offensive and racist.

"We're Hispanics ... We're cool by default", the giant billboard reads.

The "Listen2YourSelfie" campaign has been around since April 2016.

The billboard is part of the Washington State Department of Health's statewide prevention campaign that seeks to dissuade teens from using marijuana, according to The Associated Press.

The AP reports that a group of 60 local youth helped come up with the message (though it's not clear what percentage of them were Latino). The DOH is already working to take the billboard down.

A spokesperson told Vox on Wednesday that the billboard was developed with input from Hispanic community members "who have expertise in reaching specific communities".

The Valley Mall, at least, is taking steps to remove the signage from their mall after complaints from consumers.

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