In honor of International Sex Workers’ Day on June 2nd, AIDS United hosted a panel of sex work(er) activists and harm reductionists for a panel titled — Nothing About Us Without Us: Re-Centering Sex Work in Harm Reduction.
The event discussed the creation of sex worker-centered harm reduction practices and how sex worker health can be prioritized within harm reduction programs across the country.
While sex work has been criminalized and stigmatized in the United States, sex workers and sex work activists have been organizing and practicing harm reduction to prevent violence, infectious disease and overdose for decades. However, marginalized sex workers and their needs often remain deprioritized within harm reduction settings and programs.
Over the past two decades, sex workers rights have received greater attention. With that attention, has come increases in stigma, especially though FOSTA/SESTA and the National HIV/AIDS Strategy not naming sex workers as a priority population. However, this increased attention has also led to the introduction of bills such as the Safe Sex Workers Study Act, which aims to study the negative impacts FOSTA/SESTA may have had on the wellbeing and safety of those who engage in sex work.
The session also discussed the impacts of punitive policies on the health, safety and well-being of sex workers and sex work activists.
The panelists included: Tamika Spellman (Tamika H Spellman Consulting LLC, Washington, D.C.); Katie Evans (SPARC Center, Baltimore, MD); Ja’Nae Tyler (Baltimore Safe Haven, Baltimore, MD), and Soma Snakeoil (The Sidewalk Project, Los Angeles, CA).
WATCH the Webinar HERE: International Sex Workers’ Day 2022 – Harm Reduction Webinar