Hosted by: Sex Workers Outreach Project (SWOP) Chicago
When: Saturday, December 17, 2011 at 7-8:30 PM
Where: Jane Addams Hull House Museum at 800 S. Halsted Street in Chicago
Who: Current & former sex workers, allies, friends, families, and communities. This event is free and open to the public.
Join SWOP-Chicago in observing the 8th annual International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers.
Chicago– On Saturday, December 17th, sex workers and their allies will gather at vigils around the world to commemorate the annual Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, honoring sex workers who have died at the hands of violent crimes, and declaring an end to all violence against sex workers.
The Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers was inaugurated in 2003 after the conviction of Gary Ridgway (the “Green River Killer”), a serial killer responsible for the murder of at least 48 prostitutes in Washington State. One statement in his confession determined the need for a very public memorial that raises issues of violence against sex workers: “I picked prostitutes because I thought I could kill as many of them as I wanted without getting caught.”
Unfortunately, violence committed against sex workers is often perpetrated by those individuals whom we believe protect us from harm: police officers and other law enforcement agents. The additional propensity for law enforcement agents to blame sex workers for their “high-risk lifestyles” contributes to a dangerous stereotype that fuels additional violence and brutalities. It is time to recognize that violence committed against sex workers is often ignored by those whose job it is to serve and protect, and that this must end. At this year’s event, SWOP-Chicago will host a discussion with sex workers and other marginalized groups about their experiences with violence and harassment at the hands of law enforcement.
Events this year include:
Community forum: sex workers will share their experiences of police violence
Screening of “When We Walk the Streets” and other sex worker made film screenings
Memorialization and candlelight vigil to honor sex workers who have died at the hands of violence
Light snacks and beverages will be provided.
For more information contact the Sex Workers Outreach Project Chicago
For Other Events Outside Chicago: www.swopusa.org/dec17