About Us

 Backpage Closing Adult Section Endangers Our Community

Tonight, January 9th,  Backpage.com has removed its Adult content section as the result of ongoing legal and congressional pressure and unconstitutional censorship. As we and our chapters have previously written, this closure has deeply impacted our communities, removing a unique, low-cost and low-barrier way for some of the most marginalized individuals in the adult industry who otherwise might have relied on a third-party or riskier street-based sex work to earn a living. It is hard to put into words the intense anxiety, stress, and sense of oppression our community is currently experiencing. Right now, thousands of individuals are wondering where they are going to go to earn money they need to pay rent, buy their family’s clothes and food,  and fill their metro card or gas tank. This was shocking and sudden (although not without warning). We, like many of you all, are at a loss for words. We and our chapters want to fight back. Let us know what you need from us, or ideas you have. We are here with you.

Sex Workers Outreach Project-USA is a national social justice network dedicated to the fundamental human rights of people involved in the sex trade and their communities, focusing on ending violence and stigma through education and advocacy.


December 17 is International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers

December 17 – this Saturday – is recognized around the world as International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers. On this day, sex workers and allies in over 60 cities around the world will organize marches, sit-ins, vigils, community activities, and more to raise indignation at violence against sex workers and strengthen sex worker communities and responses to the systematic, daily violence and exclusion sex workers experience. This year, over 130 individuals involved in the sex trade around the world have been murdered, over 50 of these in the United States. We invite you to learn more about International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, attend an event in your area, and browse through the resources linked her, or on the December 17th website. International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers Memorials

by Bella Robinson – Executive Director, Coyoti Rhode Island

I want to talk about memorials and obituaries for a minute.  Usually an obituary describes the person that has passed away.  It also includes, loved ones that were left behind. It usually includes the person’s accomplishments.   It often includes the person’s ties to their community. However society and the media haven’t been very kind to sex workers.  Usually the mentioning of sex workers, occurs when they have been arrested, murdered or a victim of violence.  Rarely does the media bother to describe them as people. Sex workers are mothers, daughters, sisters, aunts, cousins and loved ones.  They shop at the same stores, and their kids attend the same schools.  Many of them have achieved a lot in their lives, and…click here to continue reading.   2016-memorial-spread   EPGN: Community mourns stabbing victim Maya Young

by Paige Cooperstein

Maya Young asked Anthony Harper for the time six years ago while she was walking in the Gayborhood. It was a simple question that spawned a long friendship. “I noticed the birthmark on her cheek and told her it was beautiful,” Harper told PGN through his tears. “We talked for four hours that day and have been friends ever since.” Young had recently come out as transgender and moved to Philadelphia to find other people in the community. She started living with Harper and his partner, Jonathan Carton. Harper remembered the pair used to…click here to continue reading.   copy-of-12-17-black-trans-01   From Margin to Center: Sex Work Decriminalization is a Racial Justice Issue

By Jasmine Sankofa, Esq, Amnesty International for Decrim Carnival

Sex work is criminalized throughout the United States, typically as misdemeanor offenses. Similar to the way the Unites States treats and criminalizes drug use, the policing of sex work exacerbates stigma, compromises access to resources, justifies violence, and is steeped in racial disparities. Women of color, especially Black cisgender and transgender women, girls, and femmes, are particularly vulnerable. Because sex work and sex trafficking are conflated, interventions are focused on abolishing the sex industry instead of eliminating structural issues that drive exploitation. From profiling to strip searches, from discarded condoms[1] to forcible and extorted sex—law enforcement is a frequent perpetrator of violence against sex workers.  As the Daniel Holtzclaw case in Oklahoma revealed, having a history of sex work and drug use increases…click here to continue reading & find other articles as part of the #Decrim Carnival.