Where To Get Help

by suzyhooker on August 22, 2014 · 14 comments

in This Time, It's Personal

Reach out to someone. (Photo by Mark Fischer [Flickr user fischerfotos])

Reach out to someone.
(Photo by Mark Fischer [Flickr user fischerfotos])

The numbers are staggering. According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, one out of every four women has or will experience domestic violence. If those numbers are correct, it is guaranteed that you know someone that has been or is a victim.

Domestic violence isn’t always physical; it can be verbal, emotional, or even psychological. Escaping an abuser is never as easy as “just leaving.” Being abused is isolating and stigmatizing; the notion of even asking for help for a civilian woman can be terrifying. Considering the systematic whorephobia that sex workers face,  getting away from an abuser seems downright impossible for some of us.

But help is out there. Here are some sex worker friendly resources should you or your loved ones need help. All of these resources are trans inclusive as well, to the best of our knowledge.

In or near San Francisco:
A Woman’s Place, an emergency shelter and transitional housing.
San Francisco Women Against Rape is a trans and sex worker friendly center that provides crisis counseling.

In or near Chicago:
The Heartland Alliance provides a variety of resources to those that have been impacted by domestic violence or other types of trauma.
Apna Ghar provides holistic help to the immigrant population affected by domestic violence.
Mujeres Latinas en Acción provides domestic violence counseling to the Latina population.
The Domestic Violence Legal Clinic offers free legal assistance.

In or near New York City:
The New York State LGBTQ Domestic Violence Network can direct to an agency that will provide the services you require.
The Sex Workers Project provides legal and social services to sex workers.
Safe Horizon can provide emergency housing and safe haven for individuals and families.
The Anti-Violence Project provides direct services such as immediate crisis intervention; safety planning; short or long-term counseling;  police, court and social services advocacy and accompaniment; and information and referrals to anyone who calls their hotline or comes to their offices or intake sites.

In or near Salt Lake City:
The YWCA provides shelter and legal services for domestic violence victims. Their 24-hour crisis line is: 855-992-2752.

In Boston:
The Casa Myrna agency

In Portland:
The Portland Women’s Crisis Line

If you know of any sex worker friendly resources that we missed,  leave them in the comments.


{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Caty Simon August 22, 2014 at 12:11 pm

A Tits and Sass reader just pm’ed me to add that in Los Angeles, the LA Gay & Lesbian Center has an incredible domestic violence resource department.


Also, there’s Abeni, in Orange County
an org that “exists to create a safe, confidential place for those working in the Orange County sex trades, as well as those being domestically sex trafficked,” staffed by a mix of civilians and ex-sex workers, some who have had good past experiences and some who’ve had bad ones. They mainly exist to do harm reduction and advocacy work with current sex workers, but one of their staff assured me that they want to do all they can for sex workers suffering from domestic violence, as well.


jemima August 22, 2014 at 4:40 pm

Great resource, any plans to produce something for other countries?


Caty Simon August 22, 2014 at 8:27 pm

We put out a call out and got American replies, plus, we thought we might be able to cobble up a national list in a few days seeing as how we are an American publication, but an international list might be above our reach. So that’s one of the reasons why we’re asking people to add more resources in the comments–to broaden our scope, for one. Do you know of any British or European resources we could add here, Jemima?


jemima August 25, 2014 at 6:00 am

sadly no, most DV orgs in the UK are sex worker and trans exclusive, 🙁


Caty Simon August 22, 2014 at 8:44 pm

Seriously, though, anyone with non-American resources to add, please do. I was particularly sad that we didn’t get any Canadian responses to the various call outs that produced this list.


@MerryMissLissie August 22, 2014 at 4:48 pm

In Washington, DC, the ever-excellent HIPS (www.hips.org) is collaborating with GLOV (Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence, http://www.glovdc.org) in running a 24/7 violence-response hotline for LGBT folks and sex workers.

The hotline number is 202-888-7222.


Caty Simon August 22, 2014 at 8:28 pm

Thanks–hope others will decide to add more resources they know of in the comments as well, b/c this is exactly the sort of thing we meant.


Robin D August 22, 2014 at 8:56 pm

In or near Denver:

Colorado Anti-Violence Program (counseling, safety planning, crisis line, legal advocacy, accompaniment, referrals). 1-888-557-4441 coavp.org

SPAN/Boulder Safehouse (crisis line, safehouse/shelter, counseling, legal advocacy, referrals). 303-444-2424 http://www.safehousealliance.org

Many more listed here, including Urban Peak for unaccompanied homeless under 24, Denver Safehouse, Crossroads Safehouse, Dolores Proeject, TESSA, Eastern Plains Safe Shelter:



Robin D August 22, 2014 at 9:00 pm

Also, Women in Crisis for Jeffco.


Caty Simon August 24, 2014 at 12:27 pm

Thank you!


Robin D August 30, 2014 at 6:40 pm

Women in Crisis in Jeffco might – might, not sure – be trans-exclusive. But both SPAN/Boulder Safehouse and Colorado Anti-Violence Program (which is LGBT-specific actually) are very good resources for determining what programs and resources would be best for a specific person. Both make a serious effort to be AR/AO- conscious. And I’ve given a sex work presentation to SPAN.


Project SAFE August 24, 2014 at 1:39 pm

Project SAFE in Philly can help you navigate services: 1-866-509- SAFE or safephila@gmail.com

WOAR (Women Organized Against Rape) is sex-worker friendly, but we can’t speak for all volunteers @ 215-985-3333.

We have had some great support through the DV Hotline, run by several local organizations 1-866-723-3014. This hotline is open to ALL genders.


becca August 24, 2014 at 10:50 pm

Any NZ sex workers reading this are probably already familiar with the NZPC, but their regional offices should be able to direct you to local sw-friendly services (including acting as support people or liaising with police, if you need to, to ensure that you speak to officers who are sex worker-supportive*). There are physical offices in all four major centres, and outreach workers covering the rest of the North Island. Their contact information can be found here: http://www.nzpc.org.nz/index.php?page=ContactUs

*Obviously, decrim means we’re free from the fear of arrest when reporting crimes against us, but that doesn’t mean everyone is understanding.


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