December 16, 2013

Red Umbrella Day: International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

Each December 17th, since 2003, is the International day to to End Violence Against Sex Workers. The vigil began as a memorial for the victims of the Green River Killer in Seattle, WA and has now evolved into a day remembering and memorializing those who have experienced violence and marginalization as people involved in sex work.

The day recognizes that sex workers, particularly survival sex workers and street-involved sex workers, are incredibly likely to experience discrimination, assault, battery, including murder.

 As well the day recognizes that many state laws make it difficult or challenging for sex workers to report violence or access other prevention services that center the voices and needs of sex workers.  Frequently sex workers experience the harsh impacts of marginalization on intersecting fronts of sex worker, gender, class and race.

I would like to mark this day and name the violence that sex workers face and experience. This is true too in Canada. Remembering and acknowledging this violence, which is frequently pushed to edges of acknowledgment and minds is vital.

A Vancouver memorial march is happening at 7 pm, hosted by Pivot Legal Society:

Learn More:

Global Network of Sex Work Projects Promoting Health and Human Rights

Sex Workers Outreach Project

WISH Drop-In Centre Society

PACE Society

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