This year SWOP-USA will be partnering with the Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit for both a curated sex work track and a training institute. The passing of SESTA/FOSTA in 2018 sent shockwaves throughout sex working communities across the globe and highlighted our connections to other movements and causes. Criminalization of sex workers, especially sex workers of color and trans and non-binary sex workers is nothing new and extends far beyond this recent legislation, but it is even more important for us to be able to gather and organize for our safety and survival.
The sex worker track at Woodhull will serve as an outward facing educational tool that will help to highlight the current struggles and campaigns sex workers are waging. The institute will bring together many dozens of current and former sex workers to go through a day-long intensive on challenging criminalization with an intersectional approach. We cannot defeat sex work criminalization without also addressing larger systems of criminalization, anti-Blackness, and imperialism. It is our belief that through this institute we will all leave better equipped to challenge and defeat dangerous legislation and build strong and vibrant communities for diverse groups of sex workers.
SWOP-USA is in a period of intense growth, we hired our inaugural Executive Director in 2018, partially in response to the increased need for sex worker-led infrastructure post-SESTA/FOSTA, and we have expanded from 15 chapters in 2017 to 28 in 2019. This is the opportune time for us to partner with Woodhull, who is currently posing a legislative challenge to SESTA/FOSTA, as we grow and further refine our mission.
We need your help to make this event a success! We are hoping to be able to provide 40+ scholarships so that sex workers from around the country can attend the institute. It’s no small financial undertaking and any contribution made here goes directly to transporting and housing sex worker activists for the institute. Donate Here