We Can Do Better Than This

Ummmm…. so, I’m hearing that some of my trans friends are having trouble connecting into both formal and informal safety networks!?!?!?!

WTF???

I’ve been hearing (second-hand, of course) that people are saying: “We don’t have the same kind of clients that you see” or “If you were born a man you are not welcome here.”

So what, now we’re following suit with the feminists? “You are not us, so you have to fight for yourself.” Uh-uh, nope. I’m not down with that strategy.

In a conversation with a dear friend tonight we discussed how violence translates into individual’s lives in relation to their gender and we concluded that we, as in us, ALL of us, are on the same team here. Does anybody actually think that they can keep themselves safer by engaging in the very same gender discrimination that violates female born (whatever fucking difference that makes when it comes to SAFETY) sex workers??? I mean really, can somebody make a case to me as to why it’s alright to exclude our trans sisters in the name of our own safety? I’m really not buying it.

Maybe this conversation doesn’t need to happen in-depth here at this blog- but this does need to be discussed further- somewhere, I’m open to suggestions. I know that the vast majority of people actually engaged here at BnG are of many different genders and are already in solidarity with trans workers. So I wanted to post this here and invite some positive input. I really do think that this is an issue that can be addressed and resolved among us with education and awareness.

I don’t think this is a whole-heartedly evil discriminatory thing. NO disrespect is acceptable and ignorance is not an excuse. However, I do think that as trans allies we have to reach out to other workers to inform them that ‘yes, we do share the same clients with trans workers’ (and it’s often fun when we are literally sharing themπŸ˜‰ and ‘one’s gender when born does NOT exclude them from the right to BE SAFE’ C’mon women, we do get that don’t we?

All the best,

Karly

13 Responses

  1. Oh Dear, Karly!

    With which networks are transpeople having a hard time connecting? This is indeed a major issue…

    Do they know they are welcome here? Or are we talking about physical communities in local areas?

  2. All SWOP chapters and Desiree Alliance welcome sex workers of any gender, color, etc. Please let your trans friends know they are welcome and their safety concerns are acknowledged.

    XX

  3. I’m talking about private safety profession-related networks, nothing directly political or activist-oriented. It’s an issue with some individuals more than anything, but it’s come to my attention more recently that the problem is pervasive in many cities.

  4. Perhaps we could start our own private safety networks…an ugly mug list of our own? Or try to make diplomatic inroads to the ones that already exist.

  5. I’d thought of suggesting that transgendered folk start their own network, but don’t know how that would be received. I started explaining how that could be done this summer to a trangsgendered who was complaining about the lack of sites for them, but I got pushback because of the (nominal) cost factor.

    My atittude has always been: if I can’t utilize what’s already there, I create what I need. Not always easy or quick, but gets the job done.

    I do know that EscortSupport has forums for the transgendered, though I don’t know how secure the forums are, or if they would be given an option for a private forum for blacklists. Membership is free (as far as I know).

    XX

  6. The whole point is that we all share the same clients, despite common mis-informed attitudes. If we start dividing sites up this way, how are we helping keep each other safe?

    And on the more personal level, what’s up with individual ‘female’ workers treating trans workers like ‘the other?’ Seems so self-defeating.

  7. Again- perhaps we should make inroads with those lists run by workers who feel this division. This is something we can start a conversation about.

  8. I think one of the things that helps to bridge divides is sharing space. These worker communities you speak of Karly- are they participating here with us? Do we have many transpeople here? Can we do some outreach to create these bridges? How about male sex workers- can we invite more to participate here?

  9. If they aren’t welcome at one place, their options are to either go where they are welcome, or create their own space. BnG exists as a self-created space for that very reason. As do a lot of other sex worker resources.

    Or they can beat their heads against the wall and try to become welcome where they already are not. That’s no fun.

    XX

  10. Agreed, Amanda. One can never change how others behave towards them- only how one reacts to their behavior. They themselves have to change their own behavior if it is to change at all.

  11. Meanwhile, we welcome everyone here.πŸ™‚

  12. Yes, everyone is welcome here — even Farley!

    XX

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