Latinos/Hispanics make up nearly one-fifth of Arlington County’s total population, and Spanish is the county’s second-most spoken language. Dieta Cero-Auto (DCA) was developed specifically to reach this historically underserved population and ensure that everyone has an equal opportunity to learn about the many reliable, cost-saving, and easy-to-use alternate forms of transportation in and around Arlington County.
Recognizing that many members of Arlington County’s large Latino/Hispanic population rely on public transportation, Arlington County Commuter Services’ Car-Free Diet program needed to reach out to them. But without promotional materials and outreach designed with the area’s Latino/Hispanic community in mind, the program was losing a significant opportunity to connect public transit users with available resources.
Create a suite of programs and resources in Spanish that staff and outreach teams can use to engage a variety of audiences. Target groups include both Arlington residents and business owners whose staff primarily uses public transportation to get to work. Tell the story of how Arlington’s interconnected system of public transportation can easily fit into any lifestyle. In fact, public transit can make it easier to get to work, run errands, and travel around town.
We branded Dieta Cero-Auto with a multifaceted outreach program incorporating videos, print material, and one-on-one outreach to individuals and businesses. We created several video series, each with a specific theme and audience in mind. The El Que Sabe, Sube series are consumer-facing videos, highlighting the ease of planning and taking trips using public transportation. The Shop Talk series is part of DCA’s business outreach and features local Latino/Hispanic owned businesses such as El Paso Cafe, as well as other points of interest like public libraries and events around Arlington.
The one-on-one outreach segment of DCA included appearances at Latino/Hispanic-specific events, such as the Festival Latino Americano and Governor Terry McAuliffe’s Latino Summit. The initiative also featured formal presentations to primarily Spanish-speaking audiences, among them Catholic Charities Diocese of Arlington’s Migration and Refugee Services and Liberty’s Promise, an organization devoted to the civic development of Arlington’s immigrant youth.