Posting Petitions on “Bound Not Gagged”

Change.org posts petitions online that people can sign onto electronically, and it would be great if we could also do this on “Bound Not Gagged.”  We could post petitions to decriminalize prostitution, to support or oppose specific pieces of legislation, and related to additional issues we’re concerned about.  Here is a link to what I’m referring to:  http://www.change.org/actions .  What do people think about setting up something like this on “Bound Not Gagged?”  Would it be possible?

May 8th: Video Advocacy Training for Sex Worker Organizing & Advocacy

Via The Sex Workers Empowerment Project — a video advocacy training in partnership with WITNESS,  for sex worker rights’ advocates will be held on May 8th in New York City.

Vodpod videos no longer available.
(video from WITNESS training with sex worker advocates in Macedonia)

The Sex Workers Empowerment Project (SWEP) and $pread Magazine are working with WITNESS to put together a full-day training on video advocacy, specifically for sex worker organizing and advocacy. This training will provide participants with a range of effective strategies for using video in their human rights documentation and advocacy, including a basic overview of filming and video editing. The training focuses on three types of projects:

(1) Setting up a “cop watch” program: Includes effectively utilizing video to present to UN treaty bodies in order to pressure responsible parties to take action to stop abuse by police.

(2) Incorporating video in legislative advocacy: Includes streaming video on the internet as part of advocacy campaigns and presenting focused, action-oriented video to key decision makers.

(3) Story-telling documentary: using video as a grassroots educational tool or as a fundraising tool. Continue reading

Sex industry cultures: Photos on facebook

phone_box_prostitute_calling_cards_1

escort ads London

I finally joined facebook and have started a photo album called Sex Industry. This is a public link, you don’t have to be a member of facebook to see the photos. Sometimes I worry that cultural interests, rather than overtly, campaigning, political ones are not so interesting to people here, but then I think that I must be wrong. And anyway, cultural work is just another kind of politics.

Here are a few other cultural landmarks in the past month or so:

Do you know whether or not you are a prostitute? which I published on Susie Bright’s Journal first.

Will a famous prostitute be allowed to rest beside Calvin in Geneva?

I’m a girlfriend, they’re my friends

I am also partial to satire when it comes to miserable topics. Here’s a marvellous piece on Norway’s new dreadful law

If anyone has photos to add to my collection, let me know!

Best, Laura

Call for Applications: Speak Up! Media Training for the Empowered Sex Worker

Along with some former $pread Magazine staff members, I’m the co-founder of Sex Work Awareness, an organization that works toward the destigmatization of sex workers. Our work is partly focused on creating better information and resources about sex workers for the public and for journalists. Our online project Sex Work 101 is the tip of that iceberg. Sex Work 101 has been dormant for a while, but I’ve got some content for it now and will be updating it once a week. Last week I posted an answer to the question Does the average sex worker practice safe sex?

Public education is just one part of the work of Sex Work Awareness. We also aim to train sex workers to safely respond to media requests, craft a message, and make their own media products. To that end, we’ve created a workshop: Speak Up! Media Training for the Empowered Sex Worker (click to read more about it and download a PDF of the application form).

I’ve taught several versions of this workshop over the past few years, but I’ve never gotten the chance to teach a day-long version of it. On Saturday, April 18th, my co-facilitator Eliyanna Kaiser and I will be doing just that here in New York. The workshop will cover topics like when to say no to media, outness, crafting your message, interview techniques, and basic skills for creating text, video, and audio.

This is a day-long seminar in which meals will be provided. The workshop is limited to ten participants on the basis of a submitted application; each participant will receive a Flip camera and a $50 stipend. Only self-identified current and former sex workers are invited to apply, to ensure that all feel comfortable during the seminar. The workshop is lead by two English speakers, so participants must be fluent in English.

I know lots of people will be bummed that the workshop isn’t in (fill in place). We can’t offer to cover travel for anyone coming from outside NYC, but we have a limited amount of space to put people up if theydecide to shoulder travel costs. We are planning on traveling to other cities eventually, so if you are not in the New York City area but are interested in participating in a future workshop, please get in touch. We have limited time and resources, so if you truly want us to come to your city to do this workshop, your community needs to be invested in helping make it happen.

This workshop is financially made possible by the fundraising efforts of the Sex Blogger Calendar and the generous support of all our sponsors, especially Njoy. I know $20 for a calendar doesn’t seem like much (and now they’re actually on sale for $10 each), but it has made a huge difference for the ten sex workers and former sex workers who will be able to attend this workshop and get the training and support they need to seriously kick ass.

Deadline for applications is March 10th, and we’ll inform people of acceptance on March 17th. Please circulate this widely!

A Sex Worker-based Approach to Media

Though I know not everyone here is on the SWAN bandwagon, I do think they’re doing some good work.

Here are two news items from their feed about how they’re dealing with mainstream media, sex worker media and getting out their messages. Though these news items are vague on the how-to of it all, I like the concepts.

media sensitization seminar

sex worker training on community media

Podcast Training for and by sex workers in San Francisco

Hey all, apologies for posting something San Francisco-centric, but in the interest of getting the word out, I couldn’t not share this with Bound, not Gagged. Please pass on freely!

Social Media Training for and by Sex Workers

(Text version of this flier after the jump; reblog and share over email and boards!)
Continue reading

First International Sex Worker Harm Reduction Mini-Fest 2008

Sex Workers Make Media About Harm Reduction

Celebrate our culture! View our mini-fest featuring movies about providing services for sex workers, needle exchange, life in the street sex work economy and fighting for sex workers’ rights.

All films in this selection have been produced by sex workers and their organizations.

Produced by the International Sex Worker Harm Reduction Caucus and volunteer curators from SWOP-LA, SWANK, SWOP-NYC, BPPP, Desiree Alliance and the Scarlet Alliance (the Australian Sex Worker Organisation), and curated in conjunction with the San Francisco Sex Worker Film and Arts Festival.