Observing International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

This week (Dec. 17/2014), sex workers and their allies across the world observed International Day to end Violence Against Sex Workers. Whether or not people like the idea of sex workers (sex workers being those who are prostitues, strippers, escorts, those growing in alternative sexual helaht fields such as erotic massage, and porn actors, for instance), most people can agree that sex work, the world’s oldest profession, is made up of human laborers who have basic human rights. That means, the right to police protection, respectful language in the media, healthcare, shelter, and other needs.

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Sex Workers Outreach Project of the  Tampa Bay Area  is very new to the sex worker social justice community. In fact, we are the only SWOP chapter to exist in the Southern states. Our mission is to call to attention that fact that people working in the sex industry, are just that, people…and they deserve basic human rights. We commit to holding a virtual pressence, here on this website and on Facebook, while we strive to grow strong in numbers. Many SWOP Tampa members actually live scattered across the state and so it is difficult for us all to come together in person.

For now, let this post serve as our observance of IDEVAS.

This autumn, there were three gruesome sex work murders. Two were in Jacksonville and one was in Titusville. Respectively, they were  Angelia Mangum (19) and Tjisha Ball (18). They were thrown from an overpass, there naked bodies bound together. They worked as exotic dancers, and to date, very little has been done to find their killer. You can read more about it here.

 

unnamedThere was also Jennifer Hedges (24), mother to a 5-year-old. Her murderer has been convicted.

Let us come together to advocate for safer conditions and create a support network. You do not need to be an outspoken advocate to join us, just someone who has a heartfelt stake in the cause.

 

–Buttons Berry