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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

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"In many states, including Louisiana, police are permitted to use carrying condoms as evidence of prostitution"

Yesterday was the 11th International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, and there's a good piece up at the L.A. Times about the need to "highlight the everyday violence sex workers face and to honor those who have died" as well as "fight for greater rights and visibility and to push for saner laws that make sex workers safer rather than pushing them further underground." Susan Rohwer highlights recent cases like that of Amanda Gonzalez-Andujar, a sex worker murdered in New York, whose killer's attorney argued that his sentence was too severe because the victim wasn't part of “a higher end of the community," and persistent laws like these:

In many states, including Louisiana, police are permitted to use carrying condoms as evidence of prostitution. The policy creates a chilling effect on sex workers, who would otherwise carry condoms to use for safe sex. Fear of prosecution prevents them from carrying condoms, thus putting themselves further at risk for contracting and spreading HIV.

[LATimes]



3 Comments / Post A Comment

klemay

These laws also have devastating effects on women of color, particularly trans women of color, who are not sex workers but who carry condoms like responsible sexually active human beings sometimes do. Bad news all around. :(

squishycat

@klemay Right? Women who are sex-workers and at greater risk of STIs are punished for carrying condoms because it makes it easier to (legally, not logically) prove that they are sex-workers, and women who are not sex-workers but are trying to be responsible people, but happen to look a way police don't like, are punished for carrying condoms because that alone means they can be accused of prostitution, which is of course the worst crime ever. (Do men who carry condoms also get arrested for prostitution, or is it, like, cool, man?)

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