Victoria, BC sex worker resource society PEERS has a new executive director and some exciting new developments. After a rough financial situation last year, PEERS had to close the drop-in shelter last August, but between community support and a $100,000 grant from the provincial government it is reopening the shelter five days a week.
Vietnamese sex workers continue to reject the notion that quitting their livelihood for loans in sums smaller than they would make at work will help them in the long term. Shutting down sites like MyRedbook is just another tactic to isolate sex workers and drive them underground: Truth-Out gives the lie to the claim that shutting MyRedbook was about trafficking.
A new Senate sex trafficking bill goes beyond making it a crime to sell minors for sex (already a crime) to holding web platforms responsible, requiring all sites that host adult advertising to:
…review ads before publication, request a valid telephone number and credit card number from each poster, “prohibit the use of euphemism and codewords” in ads, and prohibit the use of prepaid debit cards or cryptocurrencies in placing paid ads. For sites that run paid adult advertisements, publishers would be responsible for verifying the identity of every person who placed an adult ad by obtaining a copy of a government-issued ID containing their name, photo, and date of birth. The publisher would have to hold on to these records for seven years and make them “available to the (U.S.) Attorney General, any designee of the Attorney General, the attorney general of a State, and any designee of the attorney general of a State for inspection at all reasonable times.”
That doesn’t sound easy to abuse at all.
Former escort Gwyneth Montenegro has written what looks like a juicy new addition to the sex worker memoir genre—it looks like it will be quite something.
Follow-up to Joshua Harker’s arrest, charged with prostitution with knowledge of AIDS: the charge is antiquated and lacks relevance, particularly given that the activity Harker was engaging in had no risk of transmission.
Terra Barrow, the police officer who was outed for her past as a phone sex operator in February (and did not lose her job!) has a started a new website where she sells lingerie and blogs as “Cutie Off Duty.” While she was able to keep her job after being outed, because hitherto there had been no restrictions about past jobs in adult businesses, the president of Philly’s Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5 is trying to get an addendum in the works which would include adult businesses, and ultimately, get her fired.
“There’s got to be some kind of line drawn about what’s appropriate for off-duty behavior,” McNesby said. “You either want to be a police officer or you want to be in the lingerie business. I don’t begrudge anybody making money off-duty, but this doesn’t fit in with police work.”
Amnesty is to decide on a policy position on decriminalizing sex work.
The Jakarta Post suggests that once the sex workers of Dolly are finally forced out, they may flood paradise/neighbouring Bali. That this isn’t a good thing is made clear by the conclusion:
Without wishing to scapegoat sex workers for disseminating HIV, the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) global review in low- and middle-income countries revealed that the burden of HIV infection was disproportionately high among female sex workers, who are 13.5 times more likely to acquire HIV than the remaining adult female population in a particular area.
No mention of the clients, except to tsk over the possibility of them then spreading it to their wives.
Vancouver sex workers demand an apology and reparations for being legally banished from their neighborhood thirty years ago in a letter to the editor that also portrays a supportive sex worker community swept away in the service of gentrification.
Katie Rucke at Mint Press News elaborates on Siouxsie Q’s editorial about feminism’s failure to include sex workers.
The discussion in Canada over C-36 continue: long time sex worker Erica Obsession points out that the vastly varied realities of sex workers lives are obscured when we’re spoken over; the Adult Entertainment Association of Canada says “turn strip clubs into brothels”; the Star Phoenix notes that regardless of the ultimate outcome the provinces and local government may have a bigger role to play regarding sex work; faith leaders across Canada are speaking out against it; and the Portland branch of the Boston Phoenix makes a case that Canada had the right idea to begin with – decriminalization.