[ 18. Dec 2018 ]

International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

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Since 2003 protests take place on December 17th around the world to remember those who lost their lives and to make the struggle for empowerment, visibility, and rights for all sex workers visible.


Rest In Power. International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

Sex Workers Outreach Project joins sex workers, allies and advocates from around the world in recognizing December 17, the International Day to End Violence against Sex Workers. As we approach this day, we come together to remember those lost this year and renew our commitment to the on-going struggle for empowerment, visibility, and rights for all sex workers.

On December 17th, We also renew our commitment to solidarity. The majority of violence against sex workers is not just violence against sex works—it’s also violence against transwomen, against women of color, against drug users, against immigrants. We cannot end the marginalization and victimization of all sex workers without also fighting trans-phobia, racism, stigma and criminalization of drug use, and xenophobia.

Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers was first recognized in 2003 as a memorial and vigil for the victims of the Green River Killer in Seattle Washington. Since 2003, Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers has empowered people from cities around the world to come together and organize against discrimination and remember victims of violence.

During the week of December 17th, sex worker communities and social justice organizations stage actions and vigils and work to raise awareness about violence that is commonly committed against sex workers. The assault, battery, rape and murder of sex workers must end. Racism, economic inequality, systems of colonialist and state violence and oppression must end. The stigma and discrimination and criminalization that makes violence against us acceptable must end. Please join with sex workers around the world and stand against criminalization and violence committed against our communities.

Source: Rest In Power. International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, ::

ICRSE launches new resource: ‘Policing and detention of sex workers in Europe and Central Asia’

To mark the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers (IDEVASW) observed by the global sex worker movement on 17 December every year, ICRSE is launching an infographic to highlight the trends of policing and detention of sex workers in Europe and Central Asia. The brief document highlights the detrimental effects of sex work criminalisation and accompanying repressive policing.

According to :: new research led by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), sex workers who had been exposed to repressive policing (such as recent arrest, prison, displacement from a workplace, extortion or violence by officers) had a three times higher chance of experiencing sexual or physical violence by anyone, for example, a client, a partner, or someone posing as a client. They were also twice as likely to have HIV and/or other sexually transmitted infections (STIs), compared with sex workers who had avoided repressive policing practices.The research is groundbreaking as it is the first systematic review to examine the impacts of criminalisation on sex workers’ safety, health, and access to services. Data included in the review came from 33 countries, including the UK.

Please share the infographic below and join ICRSE in demanding that governments and abolitionist groups stop ignoring the evidence in favour of :: sex work decriminalisation (pdf).

Download the infographic on policing and detention of sex workers in Europe and Central Asia :: here as pdf

Source: International Committee on the Rights of Sex Workers in Europe (ICRSE), ::, 17. Dec 2018

December 17th 2018 Press Release - International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

December 17th is International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers. This day has been observed since 2003 marking the conviction of Gary Ridgway, The Green River Killer, who was convicted of 48 murders of sex workers, confessed to over 70 and is suspected of more than 100. Violence against sex workers is pervasive across the globe, and trans and sex workers of color are specifically vulnerable due to intersections of violence.

As of this release we have 17 affiliated events spread throughout the United States to mark this significant date. These events span from vigils and rallies – to art installations and various celebrations of life. More information on specific events can be found here ::

As an organization we attempt to track and document all of the sex workers who die in a calendar year, as of this release we have recorded 45 sex workers to be recognized this year on December 17th, 32 who passed in 2018. We believe this number will greatly increase as we get closer to the day of recognition. Our global list contains over 104 names of sex workers who have passed.

Criminalization of sex work in the United States is a large contributing factor to the violence that sex workers face. SWOP-USA calls for the full decriminalization of sex work and the dismantling of systems of policing that prey on the most vulnerable members of our communities. Trans sex workers of color make up a disproportionate number of those that we lost this year, sex worker stigma and transphobia go hand-in-hand and we must defeat both.

Sex workers rights are human rights, and sex work is work. This December 17th we renew our commitment to our fight for safety, dignity, and respect. As we gather together we will honor and uplift the names of so many of our dead and also hold space for those facing daily non-fatal violence.

Source: The Sex Workers Outreach Project (SWOP) USA, ::, 14. Nov 2018