This is an important issue! As someone who conducted HIV prevention street outreach back during the height of the AIDS Crisis. I have seen first hand the problems brought on by criminalizing sex work, including violence by customers or pimps (I have seen sex workers with black eyes, violence directed at trans women who faced violence if transphobes discovered they were trans and one young male hustler working his stroll in a sling after a violent encounter), and substance use was a huge problem as well which really hit home when a teen hustler I knew died of an overdose and was found in a port-a-john. It became clear that much more could be done to end violence and substance abuse. Treating this issue by giving sex workers dignity by decriminalization and using public health services to address the issues unique to the population.
On the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, Karen Pollock speaks to sex workers about why sex work is an LGBTQ+ issue, and the need for LGBTQ+ organisations to do more to support decriminalisation.
TW: Use of transphobic language within the context of sex work
December 17th is marked across the world as the International Day to End Violence Against Sex workers (IDEVASW). It began as a vigil to commemorate the victims of the Green River Killer, a serial killer who specifically targeted sex workers. From the mythologised Jack the Ripper, who is treated with heroic status by many, to the current day, sex workers have been targeted by those who believe crimes against them will be ignored, or even seen as brought on by the sex workers themselves. The recent conviction of Daniel Holtzclaw highlights how those with power in our society have also often targeted sex…
View original post 1,238 more words