Tag Archives: sex workers

OPINION: How the Overturn of Roe v. Wade Will Uniquely Impact Sex Workers

by Laura LeMoon


In 1973, SCOTUS heard the case of Roe v. Wade, which essentially brought into question the legality of an abortion ban in the state of Texas at the time. Back then, abortion was really only accessible in 13 states and only under certain circumstances; the remaining states outlawed abortion except to save the life of a pregnant woman. Right-wing lawmakers have been chipping away at sex workers’ privacy for years now, and while sex workers’ rights activists have been sounding the alarm to the general public for a while, I believe there is something we can all still do to support sex workers now that Roe has been overturned. The first thing is to get educated — especially if you’re not a sex worker — about how sex workers will be uniquely impacted.

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OPINION: ‘Sweetheart Deal’ Documents the Experiences of Sex Workers With Empathy

We Need More Stories Like It

by Megan Burbank


“This is one of the most vulgar ironies I could possibly even conceive of,” says Kristine, a caustic, funny welder by trade, toward the end of Elisa Levine and Gabriel Miller’s new documentary Sweetheart Deal. She’s responding to the news that Laughn Elliott Doescher, who fashioned himself mayor of Seattle’s Aurora Avenue North and friend to sex workers including Kristine, had been drugging and sexually assaulting the same people he claimed to support, including a young woman Doescher had previously assisted in tracking down an abusive client. He was one predator hidden behind another.

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OPINION: #StopAsianHate and International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

by Amanda Ong

Content Warning (CW): Slurs, harassment


When I was 13, some teenage boys left me a racist, sexist voicemail saying they wanted to know what it was like to have sex with an Asian girl. “Are you submissive?” they asked in the recording. “Can we fuck you with a shoe? Will you love us long time? Ching chong, ching chong.” The muffled laughter of pubescent boys rang in the background.

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OPINION: Prostitution and the City — Seattle’s ‘End Demand’ Problem 

by Laura LeMoon


There’s a change coming to New York City — a change in prostitution criminalization policy that has already been in place in Seattle for many years. NYC is going to stop all pending and future prosecutions of prostitutes. It will continue to prosecute prostitution-related offenses and sex buyers. What this means is that New York City is moving to a system of prostitution criminalization that has been around in the rest of the major U.S. cities for years. It may initially sound like a smart, even progressive and empowering move to only prosecute sex buyers instead of sex workers — but think again.  

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OPINION: Washingtonians Struggle to Acknowledge Sex Worker Agency and Labor Issues

by Savannah Sly and Lisa Taylor


Washingtonians are deeply concerned about sex trafficking but struggle with acknowledging the existence, let alone the needs, of sex workers. Legislators are reluctant to differentiate between sexual labor and commercial sexual exploitation, because many incorrectly view all prostitution as inherently violent. Phrases such as “prostituted people’’ are frequently used to describe all providers of sexual services, suggesting a lack of agency across the board. If sex workers are acknowledged at all in discussions about sex trafficking, they are typically presumed to be exceedingly rare or to be “not representative” of people who sell sex. 

The sex trafficking narrative dominating Washington State policymaking is overly simplistic, and it creates an artificial divide between sex workers and survivors. All people in the sex trade are vulnerable to violence because of criminalization and the extreme stigma associated with the work. In addition, many face overlapping issues of discrimination related to race, gender, class, nationality, and disability. Left alone by society to fend for ourselves, many of us have encountered commercial abuse or violence at some point in our lives. 

But it doesn’t have to be this way. 

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Court Approves City Attorney’s Motion To Clear Outstanding Prostitution Warrants

by Paul Faruq Kiefer

(This article originally appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


On the morning of Thursday, Sept. 18, a Seattle Municipal Court judge approved a motion by Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes to quash all outstanding warrants for misdemeanor prostitution, including some issued well over a decade ago.

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