On May 13, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer appointed a task force to address flagging tourism amid the backlash created by Arizona's strict new law on immigration enforcement. The task force recommended that Arizona undertake a public relations campaign to reassure potential visitors that Arizona is "a safe and welcoming destination," and promote the idea that boycotts against the state hurt "the most vulnerable employees." The task force also suggested Arizona try to "change the tone of the dialogue to reflect the true implications and tangible effects that boycotts have on the lives and families on the most vulnerable tourism employees." Brewer announced the state will pay $250,000 for the campaign, which could include getting editorials into national newspapers and conducting interviews in potential tourist markets. The Arizona Hotel and Lodging Association will kick in another $30,000. The announcement about the new PR effort came just as the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) issued travel alerts -- in English and Spanish -- informing people who visit Arizona of their rights, should they get stopped by law enforcement. Arizona's new law, SB 1070, requires officers to demand proof of citizenship from anyone they suspect may not in the U.S. legally. The legal director of Utah's ACLU affiliate, Darcy Goddard, issued a similar warning to Utahns traveling through Arizona. "We hope that Utah residents traveling in Arizona will be equipped with knowledge of their rights, so that should they encounter illegal harassment from law enforcement as a result of SB1070, they will be prepared," she said.
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