Kristin Davis May Run for Mayor if Spitzer Enters the Race

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
25 March 2011
press@manhattanmadam.com
Contact: 917-791-0445

EX-MADAM WILL RUN FOR MAYOR IF SPITZER THROWS HIS BLACK SOCKS IN THE RING

To mark the third anniversary of her arrest Ex-Madam Kristin Davis who supplied high priced call girls for former Governor Eliot Spitzer said she will jump in the 2013 New York City Mayor’s Race if the former Governor, now a CNN talk show host makes a bid.

Davis filed 18,000 signatures to get on the ballot last year, participated in the televised debate between Democrat Andrew Cuomo and Republican Carl Paladino last year and got nearly 30,000 votes in the race for Governor running on a libertarian platform.

“If Spitzer throws his black socks in the ring I may have to throw in my lacy brassiere” said Davis who once ran the most successful high end escort service in US history.

“I had pretty much decided to focus on the sex trafficking issue and not to run for public office again,” said Davis. “I am working to take the GOLD program, put forward by an advocacy group in Miami to combat sex trafficking nationwide.” Davis kicked off Hope House, a New York based non profit to fight the conscription of women into prostitution last month.

“The women who worked for me chose to be sex workers,” said Davis. “80% of the women working as escorts are doing so against their will,” said Davis. “Until prostitution is decriminalized we must provide an escape from this life for thousands of young women”.

“Running for Governor was great fun and very educational but I decided to pursue advocacy activity and some entrepreneurial efforts in legal industries,” said the ex Hedge Fund Vice president. “The one thing that could probably get me off the bench is a Mayor candidacy by Eliot Spitzer. I’d have to look at it. The opportunity to expose the inequality in our Justice system may be too great”.

Call for Healers: San Francisco Sex Workers Film and Arts Festival Whore’s Bath

Whores Bath (urban dictionary definition): The gentle dampening of a rag when one must cleanse oneself to use on vaginal area, usually between fuckin’s.

Whores Bath (21st century definition): A day of self-care, spa treatments, and magical healing  for current and former sex workers.

The San Francisco Sex Workers Film and Arts Festival was established in 1998 to provide a forum for the accomplishments of sex worker film, art, performance and video makers, and to screen works about sex workers and the sex industries from around the world. The Sex Worker Festival provides an opportunity to recognize and honor prostitutes, dancers, porn performers and other sex workers, who have historically been a dynamic part of arts communities.

For the first time, our closing event will be a sex worker healing salon on Sunday, May 29th, 2011. We will be renting a three-story house with a hot tub, and will be turning the five different bedrooms into different healing modality spaces.

We are currently looking for sex workers as healers, participants and recipients. We are seeking  healers who would be interested in offering their services in this space; massage, aestheticians, cosmetologists (still really need a few people to do mani-pedi’s), beauticians, reiki, cranial sacral, yoga, art therapy, acupuncture, herbs, healing foods, and more. We will be offering a small stipend as well as free entry to the event. We will be asking people to work two hours for entrance to the event.

 

Please call 503-348-7666 or email sexworkerfest(at)gmail.com if you are interested in being part of this community building event.

Call for Performers: San Francisco Sex Workers Film and Arts Festival Cabaret

During every Sex Worker Festival we have a cabaret variety show at SOMArts Gallery to showcase sex workers’ live performance. We prioritize a variety of media and encourage diverse participation and especially encourage street-based workers, trans, queer and sex workers of color.

We have a small stipend to pay performers, and are especially interested in showcasing performance artists who have not traditionally performed in the festival or other sex worker arts festivals in the past.

Each act will have a maximum 10 minutes, and performers are required to attend a dress rehearsal two weeks before opening night.

To submit your work, please send us the following:

-A short description of your performance

-Any videos, recordings, or photographs of your act (not required, but if you have any, that would help!)
-A brief explanation why you think your performance is suitable for the Sex Worker Film & Arts Festival

-Any tech, space, or equipment needs you have
Please send your info before May 1, 2011 (especially for promotional deadlines).

If interested in performing, please call 503-348-7666 or email sexworkerfest(at)gmail.com.

Call for Presenters: Workshops at the San Francisco Sex Workers Festival

Call for Presenters: Workshops at the San Francisco Sex Workers Festival

The San Francisco Sex Workers Festival was established in 1998 to provide a forum for the accomplishments of sex worker film and video makers and to screen works about sex workers and the sex industries from around the world. The Sex Worker Festival provides an opportunity to recognize and honor prostitutes, dancers, porn performers and other sex workers, who have historically been a dynamic part of arts communities.

This year, the San Francisco Sex Workers Festival will include a day of workshops, on Friday, May 27th, sponsored by SWAAY (Sex Work Activists, Allies, and You). The general theme will be sex workers learning from each other on topics focused on their personal lives, self-care, skills that apply to all areas of sex work, and activism at the individual level.

Since most of the festival centers on the arts, we are prioritizing non-art submissions for these workshops. The length of this day’s event, as well as the session length, are yet to be determined, and will be finalized after submissions are selected. However, session lengths will likely be either 60 or 45 minutes, depending on the number of accepted proposals, so please keep that limit in mind with the scope of your session idea.

This event takes place in San Francisco, and you must have your own means to travel to the event, as there is not a budget to pay for speakers. However, if you are coming from outside the area, you’ll get a lot of bang for your buck with being able to attend the week- long festival and network with other sex workers.

Your proposal should include:
* A title.
* Your name, affiliation, and a little bit about your background or interest in sex work.
* The style of your proposed session: lecture, group discussion, panel, etc.
* Have you presented on this topic previously? When and where?
* A more detailed abstract of what you would like to cover, less than 500 words.

The deadline for these proposals is April 1st, 2011. You will be notified whether or not your proposal was accepted by April 5th, 2011. There will also be time for short, 5-10 minute lightning talks during the lunch hour. (Lightning talks are brief lecture-format presentations for people who don’t need a full session to cover their material, but would like to quickly get it out there to the audience.) These slots are on a first-come, first-served basis, so if you know you want to do a lightning talk and have a topic in mind, please submit a proposal so we can try to guarantee you a spot. It may also be possible to sign up for a lightning talk shortly before the event or on the spot.

Send your proposals to furrygirl (at) furrygirl.com with the subject line “Workshop proposal for the Sex Workers Festival”

Schapiro Group studies are junk science

I’ve been writing for months that “studies” done by the Schapiro Group (an Atlanta-based marketing research firm) are garbage, but I’m glad to see that an organization with a much louder voice than mine has come to the same conclusion.  It’ll be interesting to see how much, if at all, these findings are disseminated by the mainstream media.

 

86 the violence performance locations!

Check out the FB Event page http://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=10150110705347734&id=515647733&ref=notif&notif_t=wall#!/event.php?eid=169566556428737
And the locations where this action will take place across the country!  Come out and support!
Chicago, IL 2pm
Primary action at Watertower place, proceeding to Millenium Park
Secondary action at Tulip 3448 N Halsted

Tucson AZ, 12pm
Jacome Plaza
101 N Stone Ave

Austin, TX 2pm
9th St and Congress Ave

Denver, CO
Between the main library and the art museum

San Francisco, CA 12pm
UN Plaza

NYC, NY 3pm
South end of Union Square

Los Angeles
location TBD

St Petersberg FL, 3pm
North Straub Park
500 5th Avenue North

Portland, OR, 12pm, Location TBD

 

yours,

surgeon

Making sense of the UPR.

So, with all the news happening in the Sex Worker activism camps around the UPR process, I thought it would be wise to try and make sense of it all, which I will be trying to do with this post.

UPR is the Universal Periodic Review, and each of the 192 countries in United Nations Human Rights Council are reviewed every 4 years.  This year (well 2010-2011) is the review period for the United States, and is the first time the US has been reviewed.  Basically the US writes a report about their status in regards to human rights and each of the 192 countries gets a chance to tell the US how they feel about the report, and anything else in regards to human rights.  Next, the United States gets to respond. In their response for each item the countries told the US about, they can support or not support the item.  But of course since we are talking about whole countries this process takes a long time (about a year total). Since we as sex workers are part of the Human Rights world, we are interested in what happens, and below is what happens as it concerns us as sex workers:

So in August of 2010, the US gave their report (PDF).

In November of 2010, the countries told the US what they thought of their report.  This is where it finally gets interesting to us as sex workers, for Uruguay had this to say (report in PDF):

92.86. Undertake awareness-raising campaigns for combating stereotypes and violence against gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals, and ensure access to public services paying attention to the special vulnerability of sexual workers to violence and human rights abuses (Uruguay);

We of course were VERY pleased with what Uruguay said, and promptly started organizing, to see how we can get the US to accept this recommendation and show their support.  So we started organizing, and we built a special group for this process with lots of broad support (See our group’s webpage for more information).  With all of this organizing we managed some success, and this is what the United States said in response:

86. We agree that no one should face violence or discrimination in access to public services based on sexual orientation or their status as a person in prostitution, as this recommendation suggests.

This is of course awesome, but our work is not yet done, for that we’ve started a new campaign that takes place this Wed March 18th called 86 the violence, don’t let us be a target. A brief video about it is here:

Hopefully this helps make this whole process easier to understand!

BREAKING: U.S. ACKNOWLEDGES HUMAN RIGHTS NEEDS OF SEX WORKERS

####
For Immediate Release
Contact: Stacey Swimme
Communications@StJamesInfirmary.org
(877) 776‐2004 x. 2

Sienna Baskin, Esq.

SBaskin@urbanjustice.org

(646) 602-5695

BREAKING:  U.S. ACKNOWLEDGES HUMAN RIGHTS NEEDS OF SEX WORKERS

At UN, US Says No one Should Face Discrimination For Public Services, Including Sex Workers

March 9th, 2011- According to their statement in response to the UN’s human rights evaluation, the US agrees that “…no one should face violence or discrimination in access to public services based on sexual orientation or their status as a person in prostitution.” This marks a rare occasion in which the US is addressing the needs of sex workers as a distinct issue separate from human trafficking. Sex workers have unique needs that aren’t adequately addressed by federal trafficking policy. Sex workers are hopeful that this will present a new opportunity to work with anti-trafficking efforts to address mutual human rights concerns.

“People in the sex trade have been marginalized and stigmatized when seeking public services, including through law enforcement. This is a big step forward to acknowledging sex workers’ human rights.” Kelli Dorsey, Executive Director of Different Avenues said.

Over the past year sex workers and their families, sex workers’ rights groups, human rights advocates, and academic researchers have engaged in an unprecedented advocacy collaboration. “It has been crucial to bring together the perspectives of a wide range of communities including immigrant and LGBT groups in order to illustrate the depth of human rights violations experienced by sex workers in the United States,” says Penelope Saunders, Coordinator of the Best Practices Policy Project, who worked with the Desiree Alliance to send a shadow report to the Universal Periodic Review (UPR). These initial efforts resulted in Recommendation 86 and the formation of a group called Human Rights For All: Concerned Advocates for the Rights of Sex Workers and People in the Sex Trade (HRA).

HRA had support from more than 125 organizations in urging law makers to accept Recommendation #86, part of the report of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), which called on the US to look into the special vulnerability of sex workers to violence and human rights abuses. “We were long overdue for the United States to take the needs of sex workers seriously, particularly the need to stem violence and discrimination,” says attorney Sienna Baskin, Co-Director of Sex Workers Project at the Urban Justice Center in New York.

“Human beings cannot be excluded from accesible services because they work in economies outside of society’s accepted norms,” explains Cristine Sardina, co-director, Desiree Alliance.  “The fact that the U.S. has acknowledged the recommendation in full speaks to the current administration’s willingness to recognize the abuses sex workers have been subjected to for too long.  We look forward to working with this administration”.

Sex workers say the issues they face are complex and more work will have to be done to protect against human rights abuses. “Sex workers who are transgender or people of color face the most violence and it’s important that we continue to realize and work towards ending that, this is a good first step.” Said Tara Sawyer, who sits on the Board of Directors of the Sex Workers Outreach Project USA.

On Friday March 18th Sex Workers will stage demonstrations in cities across the country to celebrate adoption of Recommendation #86. “The U.S. has finally acknowledged that sex workers face issues separate from those of human trafficking victms,” said Natalie Brewster Nguyen, an artist and member of the Sex Workers Outreach Project of Tucson who is organizing the demonstrations on the 18th, ”Now we need to demand that steps be taken to address the issues that will actually improve the daily lives of sex workers.”

For more information on this story or the upcoming March 18th demonstrations, please contact Stacey Swimme at Communications@StJamesInfirmary.org or (877) 776-2004 x. 2

####

Call for Submissions: Sex Workers Zine Project – Deadline extended to May 1, 2011

The Sex Worker Zine Project seeks to create a zine showcasing the diversity of sex workers’ experiences of all genders, sexualities, ages, abilities, nationalities, immigration statuses, and ethnic backgrounds. International submissions encouraged! This yet to be titled zine will be printed in full cover and will be available for sale with profits supporting the work of SWOP-NYC. All accepted contributors will receive a free copy of the completed zine.

How to Contribute

Are you a current or former sex worker or someone who has experienced trading sex for money, food, housing, drugs, hormones, and/or other survival needs? We want to hear from you! Please submit your work on a sheet of paper 5 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ (ex. half a sheet of letter size paper) with quarter inch margins, full color (or black and white, high contract) page to our zine project. Please do not fold the paper if possible. Include on a separate page (either attached with a paper clip or leave unattached) your name (does not need to be your legal name), age, email address and/or phone number, and a mailing address should you wish to receive a copy if your page is makes it in the final project. Please state how, if at all, you wish to be credited for your work. (ex. Sparkley Stacey, John Doe, Anonymous in India, etc.) Be creative! Use pens, markers, collage, glitter, what ever way you wish to express yourself! You can use text or images alone or together. You can submit up to five pages but we will probably only be able to print one page per person. Your original materials will not be returned to you.

Your submission must be postmarked by May 1, 2011.

Mail your submission to:

Sarah Jenny
721 Broadway
4th Floor, ITP
New York, NY 10003 USA

Contribute In Person!

We will be providing supplies to make your own contribution at the International Day for Sex Workers’ Rights Potluck on Tuesday, March 1st in New York City. More information coming soon!

Prompts & Ideas for Submissions

  • Your techniques for self-care, ex. bubble bath, cooking a good meal, playing with your dog, etc.
  • Techniques for harm reduction, ex. getting tested regularly, tips for screening clients, strategies for staying safe, etc.
  • How To Be An Ally To Sex Workers
  • Tips for Partners of Sex Workers – how to be supportive, how to decide whether or not to come out to a partner, etc.
  • Illustrate your favorite work outfit
  • Illustrate your favorite outfit in general!
  • What does a bad day at work feel like? How do you cope? What would you like to see change?
  • Illustrate and write about what sex work is like in your city, region, or country.
  • Illustrate and write about what you imagine ideal working conditions to be like — ex. decriminalization, health care, etc.
  • Tell us about your sex worker community!
  • A list of your favorite support resources, books, magazines, and organizations
  • Anything else you wish to add!

Sex Workers Outreach Project Calls on Vallejo to Embrace Alternative Approaches to Prostitution Concerns

####

For Immediate Release

Sex Workers Outreach Project Calls on Vallejo to Embrace Alternative Approaches to Prostitution Concerns

 

Contact: Robyn Few, Co-Founder
Sex Workers Outreach Project USA (SWOPUSA)
415-895-1500
swopusa@yahoo.com

March 3rd 2011 is International Sex Workers’ Rights Day. Around the globe sex workers and allies are celebrating the strength and resilience of their communities. Locally, the Sex Workers’ Outreach Project of the San Francisco Bay Area (SWOPSF) is calling on Vallejo to proceed with compassion and justice while addressing  recent concerns of residents who object to a visible increase of prostitution activities in their neighborhoods.

“Prostitution crackdowns just push sex workers from one city to the next, the problem is not being solved, people are simply being displaced.” Says Robyn Few, co-founder of SWOPUSA. “Community groups would do better to look at economic empowerment approaches rather than shame and hatred.”

We must look at the conditions that put people into street economies in the first place. Economic disadvantage, inadequate employment and educational opportunities lock people into the sex trade, whether by choice or circumstance or a combination of the two. “If you want prostitutes off of your streets, then support viable economic alternatives, not arrest or incarceration which impose further economic and life hardships,” Shannon Williams of SWOPSF said, “Spraying people with hoses is not only inhumane and dehumanizing, it’s ineffective and sends a message that violence toward sex workers is acceptable.”

Women are hit the hardest by economic recession, resulting in more of them entering the sex industry. Many turn to private venues, but online sites such as Craigslist Adult Services have been shut down, forcing people to seek business in open-air black markets. Federal anti-trafficking efforts that have been misdirected into prostitution abatement efforts have worked to censor sex workers, removing safer and more private ways of doing business.

Few says, “It’s time to come up with new solutions. Arrest, incarceration and shame have not succeeded in curbing prostitution in any city anywhere else. Don’t expect these tactics to solve any of Vallejo’s problems either.”

 

####

 

CALL FOR PERFORMERS & VIDEOS: Sex Worker Cabaret in NYC – Sunday, June 12, 2011

Share Your Sex Worker Pride this June at the Sex Worker Cabaret on June 12th at Public Assembly in Brooklyn!

 

APPLY TODAY >>> http://www.sexworkercabaret.com/

** Please Forward Widely! **

We are looking for cabaret acts of 3-7 minutes each for an early evening (7pm -11pm) event: burlesque, performance art, literary readings, comedy, video art, musical acts, etc. are all welcomed.

 

Diversity encouraged! All genders, bodies, ages, and talents welcome to apply. We are currently looking for proposals that would be, on some level, about sex work: whether it be a story about your favorite/least favorite client, a burlesque number to She Works Hard For the Money, or a more abstract interpretation. Preference is given to current/former sex workers (self-defined) but we will also consider topical submissions from allies, partners of workers, etc.

 

Please submit a short proposal by April 7, 2011 about the act you are interested in doing. If we don’t know one another, please send a link to your website, facebook, etc. or a link to a video.

 

Compensation: This is a benefit for…you! Some overhead costs need to be covered but after that, all money received from the door will be pooled and split among the performers. (Each act is a share in the pool; each video is a half-share) We ask that you help promote as the more people we bring in, the more money for the performers. We can help out of town performers find housing, but are unable to provide travel stipends. We are also looking for go-go dancers who would be compensated with part of the pooled funds — but also receive tips. Go-go dancing is 7pm-8pm and during intermission. You may apply to both perform and go-go. Please forward to anyone you think might like to be a part of this very special evening.

 

Deadline: Please submit your proposal by April 7th.

 

Questions? Contact: Sarah Jenny & Damien at producers@sexworkercabaret.com

http://www.sexworkercabaret.com/

 

This venue is wheelchair accessible.