Tag Archives: Sex Workers' Rights

OPINION: Prostitution and the City Part 2: The ‘Good’ Survivors and the Troublemakers

by Laura LeMoon


I am scared as I write this. Not for my physical safety, but for my emotional safety. I am scared to name names. I am scared to tell the truth about Seattle’s Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) program and the people involved in it. I am a former sex worker and sex trafficking survivor living in the Seattle area. In Part 1 of this two-part series, I wrote about the LEAD program, which is Seattle’s diversion program for prostitution charges. I also wrote a brief background on “end demand” ideology, which is at the heart of LEAD programming. “End demand” philosophy is a form of policy related to criminalization of prostitution. It focuses policing on the buyers’ side of sex work as a way to limit or end prostitution. 

I am a trafficking survivor, and yet because I have the dual identities of trafficking survivor and sex worker; because I am pro-sex work and sex worker’s rights, I’m seen as invalid and illegitimate by the “end demand” movement in Seattle. The very basis of their philosophy is that all prostitution is inherently exploitative. And I disagree. 

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