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December 17 – International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

December 17th, 2008

Dr Petra

Today marks the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers organised by the Sex Workers Outreach Project. The aim of the day is to raise awareness of the risks faced by sex workers, remember those who have been injured or killed, and to work together to find ways to enable those in sex work to do so safely.

Over at Cory Silverberg’s place is an excellent summary of the annual event, including details from co-founder Annie Sprinkle about ways to get involved. Cory also has a separate blog about some pretty poor science reporting on prostitution which is worth reading as yet another reminder why this day is important. It’s not just about rights and wellbeing, but about tackling discrimination and ignorance about sex workers – wherever that may reside.

You can keep up to date with news on sex work with $pread magazine and in the UK the All Women Count campaign (which includes information on the Safety First Coalition formed in the UK after the tragic murders of women in Ipswich).

In the UK we are still debating the future of our sex laws relating to prostitution. The current recommendations from the government do not put the needs of sex workers at the forefront. Campaigns will continue to challenge political suggestions that are based on rhetoric rather than evidence and fail to include the voices of sex workers. You can help here by writing to your MP and getting them to make decisions based on accurate and ethical research on prostitution, otherwise we could well see more sex workers at risk of violence over the coming years.

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