The Week in Links

Walt Goggins as Venus Van Dam

Walt Goggins as Venus Van Dam

GLAAD released their third annual Trans Images on TV report and were pleased to find that “only one character this year was portrayed as a sex worker, Venus Van Dam on FX’s Sons of Anarchy. This is an improvement over previous years in which the most common profession for trans characters was sex worker.”

Terri Jean Bedford received the second annual Ontario Civil Liberties Association award last Friday, and called on Premier Kathleen Wynne and Toronto Mayor John Tory to refuse to enforce C-36.

Non-sex working feminists continue to speak over sex workers regarding the legalization or decriminalization of sex work in India. Lalitha Kumaramangalam, the chair person for the National Commission on Women who began the discussion, is still in favor of legalization, but says that there is a fine line between legalization and decriminalization and the Commission’s recommendations are still being finalized.  The Hindu Businessline does a good rundown of the differences between and drawbacks of legalization vs decriminalization.

Jane Pratt is in the middle of watching XOJane get sold off, yet she still has time to speculate about sex workers’ backgrounds.

Late to the game with this one, but remember that “This is what a feminist looks like,” t-shirt that made waves when the Daily Mail revealed it was manufactured in sweatshops, unlike virtually every other mass market piece of clothing?  The proceeds from these feminist shirts went to The Fawcett Society, active supporters of End Demand campaigns to implement the Nordic model.

Adult Verified Video Chat is auctioning off sex with its female performers, onscreen.  Though the second auction is currently ongoing, no scenes have yet been shot for the first auction, as both the winner and the runner-up had “scheduling conflicts.” [READ MORE]

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image courtesy Amanda Brooks

(image courtesy Amanda Brooks)

Amanda Brooks published this post about the ordeal a client put her and Jill Brenneman through over the past two years. It’s a horrifying and compelling must-read.

Scarlet Road, a documentary about an Australian escort and her disabled clients, is showing at the Columbus International Film Fest.

An Irish sex work abolitionist group is making fake sex worker profiles on Tinder, conflating sex work with sex trafficking in an attempt to drum up support for abolition.

The defeat of the “End Demand” addition to the UK’s End Modern Slavery bill will not stop the implementation of the Swedish Model in Northern Ireland, where the criminalization of paying for sex passed a few weeks ago over the protests of sex workers and their allies.

Naomi Sayers writes about the reality of being an indigenous woman and a sex worker and the way that marginalized people are betrayed by the people entrusted with their protection.

The drummer of AC/DC doesn’t like when escorts play with his pet dog.

Thuli Khoza, the co-ordinator of Sisonke Durban (the Durban chapter of the South African sex workers’ rights organization Sisonke) discusses the work Sisonke does around outreach, education, and advocating for decriminalization in South Africa. [READ MORE]

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Viktoria (2014)

Viktoria (2014)

Viktoria, a new film about migrant sex workers in Switzerland, is out now in that country.  Switzerland attracts sex workers from Hungary, although prejudices against the Roma—a group many of the migrants belong to—color their reception.

Jordan Flaherty, interviewed on this site about his reporting on Project ROSE, has a new story out about how Alaska’s sex trafficking laws are used against those they ostensibly protect: “Some of them appear to be charged with trafficking themselves.” The accompanying television segment is here.

The Canadian take on the End Demand/Swedish model, C-36,  passed in the Senate on Tuesday despite testimony from Canadian sex workers that it would only endanger them further.  It is now one step away from becoming law.

In the UK, the amendment to the Modern Slavery Bill which would have implemented the End Demand model was defeated, bringing UK sex workers closer to decriminalization.

Kate McGrew, the sex worker contestant on Irish reality show Connected, says she is not a prostitute, she’s a sex worker, and pointed out the stigma attached to the word “prostitute” as well as the negative repercussions of the Turn Off the Red Light campaign, which seeks to implement the Swedish model in Northern Ireland.

After hearing horror stories from disabled clients, Trish St. John began Sensual Solutions, a Vancouver escort agency that works with disabled people.

Here’s yet another lawsuit over the employee rights’ of strippers has hit, this time involving the Queens, New York club Scandals. [READ MORE]

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Trick or treat, smell my feet! Then pay me for the privilege.

Trick or treat, smell my feet! Then pay me for the privilege.

Darren Vann, the man accused of targeting sex workers and killing seven women in Indiana, says he messed up by killing his last victim, Afrikka Hardy in Hammond instead of Gary. (True remorse.) S.E. Smith asks how a convicted sex offender was able to murder at least seven women over the past few decades. Gary Ridgeway could answer that for her. And our own Tits and Sass contributor, Peechington Marie, explains how Vann’s sex worker victims are stigmatized and erased by the media because they don’t fit the good victim profile on the Ebony Magazine site.

Olga Galkina, a St. Petersburg lawmaker, has drafted a bill that would give clients a choice between fines or arrest if they’re caught seeing sex workers, with the fines and jail time increasing if they know the person was forced into sex work, and best of all, an option that would forgive and forget the infraction if the client marries the sex worker.  Galkina says that she favors legalization of prostitution and is using this bill to start a public conversation on the issue.

File this one under Civilians Being Obnoxious Idiots About Sex Work: two former New School students have started the world’s first “poetry brothel,” where:

….writers could present their work in a more vibrant, visceral setting. They would dress up, invent alter egos, and sell not their bodies but their poems.

A 19-yearr-old Chinese backpacker is looking for generous “temporary boyfriends” to fund her travels: they pay for her trips to their cities and her expenses while there and in return “they get a whole night with me, my undivided attention, and a chance to show themselves off in the company of a truly beautiful girl.”  Haters say if she was getting cash rather than a trip we would all know what to call her, but I think we already do: thrifty.

A former police officer who abused his power in order to force sex workers to have sex with him has been sentenced to 25 years in jail.

Strippers at Sapphire Gentleman’s Club is Las Vegas won  legal recognition of their employee status on Thursday, and the case is now back in the District Court to decide how much the approximately 6,500 dancers who work there are owed.

Siouxsie Q. talks about Facebook’s short lived legal name policy and the reality that pseudonyms keep us safe.

CNN goes inside the world of a feminist stripper and hears that “it’s hot and empowering.” Sex workers the world over who’ve been trying to break free of that word cringe in unison.

In the wake of her rebirth and the creation of her new anti-trafficking organization Somaly Mam breaks her silence to defend herself. Some things are too good to last. [READ MORE]

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Courtney Love tweets about the strip club bet which marks her reconciliation with Dave Grohl. (Screencap of Courtney Love’s twitter feed.)

As of this posting,  Tits and Sass contributor Peechington Marie’s fundraiser to allay funeral costs for the families of young murdered Black strippers Tjisha Ball and Angelia Mangum is closing in two hours. Contribute and make those two hours count!

Courtney Love and Dave Grohl buried the hatchet and made a bet about who could get the most strippers at Scores.  (A source reports that Grohl is an excellent tipper!) Though Love left early, she’s not letting the bet go.  She can have me for free.

Mixed martial arts fighter and noted batterer of women War Machine (Jonathan Koppenhaver) hung himself with his bed sheet in jail and…survived.

Belle Knox has nothing but high praise for the Law and Order: SVU episode that borrows her story.

A new city ordinance in Oakland allows the city to evict people suspected of being sex workers, and requires their landlords do the same.

In fact—when it comes to sex work, at least—a tenant does not need to have committed any crime to be evicted for that crime. “The crime solicited need not actually be committed for solicitation to occur,” the amended bill now reads.

[READ MORE]

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