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Friday, February 10, 2017

PHYLLISHA ANNE AND "ILLEGAL RECORDINGS"

Dear APAG Guild:

I came across this statement today on your site about supposed "illegal" recordings made by Phyllisha Anne you seem not only quite upset about, but seem upset that the IEAU board isn't doing as you're wanting them to do about the situation.  http://www.apagunion.com/a-p-a-g-defines-its-position-in-regards-to-i-e-a-u-founder-phyllysha-anne-and-the-disdain-and-inactivity-of-the-i-e-a-u-president-and-its-current-board/

Now I don't know either one of you in this situation but I do feel I know enough about such things as "confidentiality" laws and illegal recordings as to inquire a little more about something you feel so strongly about you're attacking a woman who founded the union in the first place from what I understand.  My understanding, maybe I'm wrong, is that in an attempt to whitewash the connection between James Deen and the Adult Performers Advocacy Committee, who had their president turn out to be a man accused of raping at least nine women who came forward, one of who is now dead from a drug overdose which we don't know if it was an accident, a suicide or something worse - you've basically repackaged yourself as this group.

I know about these sorts of things because for years when I had been answering the only hotline in this country for years I never ever recorded a phone call.  When I launched the hotline for Prostitutes Anonymous, later renamed to Sex Workers Anonymous, we were literally the only hotline for adults to call if they got into trouble, needed help, or if they needed to reconnect to people who were also from the sex industry.

You have to realize things have changed in the world as well as the industry.  I say that because in 1987 when I launched the hotline if you were a prostitute, stripper, or porn performer you were considered by this country and law enforcement as nothing more than a "common criminal".  That was including if you didn't have one single arrest even on your record.  That included if you were strictly an exotic dancer who didn't take "tips" for the Champagne Room.  That included if you were a porn model or performer but also didn't prostitute as well.  That included if you were working at a legal establishment at a legal job.

Back then if you were beat the shit out of by your husband, not a trick, but your husband - and you tried to go to a domestic violence shelter for help they would refuse you based on just the fact you were involved in the sex industry.  You wanted to go into a detox?  Forget it.  If they even suspected you were involved in sex work - you would be denied treatment.  I literally once took a girlfriend of mine I had rescued out of a house after she had been stabbed 51 times and chained to a refrigerator after I found her and got her out of there and we didn't wait for an ambulance because those men could come back at any moment - when I took her bleeding all over me to the ER they refused to even touch her!  I had to literally threaten a medical complaint against them and a lawsuit in order to get the hospital to stitch her up.  Even then they refused to admit her after they stitched her up.

Why?  Because back then anyone in sex work was considered literally UNABLE to be a victim by virtue of prostitution being illegal.  What this meant was if you were kidnapped, beaten, raped, and otherwise violated victim services was not able to help you because you were considered a "criminal".  If a guy robbing a bank gets shot - he can't sue for "personal injury" because he was injured during the commission of a crime.  Essentially when the law considers you a "criminal" you have no rights.

Meaning if a housewife got herself beat up, raped, kidnapped, or whatever then the Office of Victim Services would step in and provide that victim with medical care, counseling, even vocational rehabilitation should the injury be so severe they couldn't work any longer, and even relocation if they needed to get physically away from their abuser in order to be safe from them.  BUT if you were a sex worker back prior to the passing of the Trafficking Act of 2000 - you would be told by Victim Services to go kick rocks basically.  Now since they wouldn't pay for these services - no one would take care of us when we were injured or in trouble.

I remember calling 911 one time when another girlfriend of mine had her pimp lock her in the house, shutting me outside of the apartment, and then I could hear him beating the shit out of her.  So I called 911 and told them she was being held inside the apartment and her "boyfriend" was beating her and I needed them to come rescue her.  You know what 911 did?  Laugh and hang up on me.  Why?  They knew the woman at this address was a prostitute - so as far as they were concerned they weren't going to risk injuring a cop to help save her.

Now this was taking into consideration it wasn't the cop fucking with us.  Because I had a cop get a thing for me who kept insisting he wanted my "services".  I refused because he was a cop and I got myself arrested for that refusal.  He threatened to keep arresting me until I gave in and agreed to see him.  Some of my girlfriends have been raped by cops, even pimped by cops.  So who do you call when the guy hurting you IS a cop?

We had no one to call for help which made a lot of women feel like they needed a pimp for protection.  But in most cases of course that guy wound up being the problem to and then who do you call?  Until the Trafficking Act of 2000 passed which allowed us to be able to be legally classified as a "victim" - we had nowhere to go for help when we got into trouble.  You would call the rape hotline and the minute they found out you were a prostitute - click.  Why?  Because their donors wouldn't donate to help "whores" who got raped because that's actually considered "theft of services" by most courts.

Now don't get me wrong - the Trafficking Act of 2000 passing didn't solve our problems by a long shot.  It was going to work well until the revision of 2003 came down where Randall Tobias gave all that money we had worked to make available to help us be handed over to the "faith based" groups who agreed to the "prostitution clause" which is they wouldn't view prostitution as part of "work" that is involved in the sex industry.  Meaning we got a long way to go because they'll now fund services for "victims" but not "sex workers".  Causing any group who wants money to help sex workers has to now fly under the radar by calling us all "victims".

But back to when I started our hotline, I got some really desperate life and death calls from people who couldn't turn to the cops for help.  Of course I advertised "all calls are confidential" and meant that.  I had the police come to me once asking about someone who called and they tried to slap me with a warrant to be me to talk to them about what she said.  I refused and because I was a 12 step group I am able to afford callers the same confidentiality as AA or NA does through laws grandfathered in by them.  But the warrant was given to me before a court ruled that anything said in an AA group is considered "privileged" so to fight it I went and got ordained as a minister.  It was quicker than trying to become a priest, doctor or lawyer overnight to be able to fight back against their demand for information.

So I take confidentiality very seriously.  But as we grew bigger and older - things started happening.  I had a call come in with respect to the Jessie Foster case where this woman was telling me information about the man she believed killed Jessie and three other prostitutes in Las Vegas.  She was in fear for her life and I frankly was also after she told me about this man.  The call was because she wanted help to get away from him and he hadn't been prosecuted for Jessie's murder according to her because he'd turned into a cop's informant.  Meaning if she tried to run she knew he might get his cop friends to help drag her back.  How did I know if everything she was telling me might not be the last thing she says on this earth?  What if I went to pick her up and she was already dead?  What would I tell the cops about what she told me?

I remember that call got me seriously thinking maybe I had better start recording the incoming calls to the hotline.  As I started getting more death threats, suicide threats, callers talking to me about children who were being trafficked, etc. I started thinking much more seriously that some of these calls needed to be recorded in case it was something literally involving saving someone's life.

When the death threat calls we started getting became more pin pointed - meaning the caller knew about members in our program, where they lived, what their real names were, etc., I started thinking even more seriously that I needed to start recording these calls to protect someone.  The last straw for me was after I saw the ACORN hidden video where this reporter pretended to be a pimp and he went into the ACORN office claiming he was a pimp and he recorded the staff there advising him how to traffick women across the Mexican border.  Of course the video made it appear the guy was actually advising him how to do this.  In reality, the man said he was stalling this guy until the police could come so the video was made out of context.

I decided to start recording calls then.  I did this only in case of an emergency - and started deleting the calls once I knew there was nothing we needed to keep the records for.  Which I did just in time because a few weeks after we started recording calls we had a completely phony person pretending to be a sex trafficking victim call us up begging for help to escape her pimp.  We arranged everything for her to be picked up at the bus stop, taken to the airport, flown to the USA into a year long program, her papers were arranged, her flight was arranged and we had everything ready to go for her - and then SHE didn't show up at the pick-up point.

Then this "catfish" victim started telling everyone on social media we had "abandoned her".  We had supposedly "promised to help her" and "left her stranded".  Only I was able to identify this woman was actually one of Swanee Hunt's minions (Swanee Hunt is the mastermind of these "end demand campaigns") who was trying to get us discredited.  We traced the IP address back to Rachel Moran.  The cell phone was registered to Rachel Moran.  The utility bills for her house were in Rachel's name.  We spoke to the local police who confirmed that was Rachel's house and she lived alone.   BECAUSE I had recorded the calls - I was able to post the tape online next to a taped interview of Rachel Moran's - and then anyone could hear this was in fact Rachel Moran yanking our chain here.

Something we never could have exposed if we hadn't of recorded those calls.  Initially I recorded them in case her pimp killed her and we needed them to prosecute him.  Then it turned out we needed them to not only show people we didn't abandon this woman - but also expose how people like Swanee Hunt operate.  Swanee funded the "Stop the Red Light" group that Rachel was a part of when this went down is why I say that about her.  So we did not let down someone calling for help as they were trying to make people believe.  I also hadn't posted the tape of a sex worker calling us - but someone PRETENDING to be one.  Had I not recorded those calls - we would not have been able to defend ourselves nor expose these tactics.

I also use these tapes to train our volunteers on our hotline.  We have pimps who routinely will send in certain women to try and find out where our groups meet.  I know the voices of these people but our newer members don't.  So I'm able to play these tapes for them to train them as to who to be aware is fishing for information.

I have no choice but to have the recorder on all the time because when you pick up the phone - by the time someone says their death threat to you - they're gone.  You don't have time to hit the record button.  You certainly aren't going to be able to ASK them for consent to record them threatening to slice your throat or the throat of one of our members.  Thanks to the recording - I was even able to record a police officer threatening us.  So that leaves having a recorder on the phone at all times in case of that type of call coming in.  Now for us, we delete every file of every call once we determine that call wasn't a threat.  They are not used in any way to violate a members' confidentiality as all calls that aren't threats like that - are immediately deleted.

Now I know that Phyllisha has gotten calls for help over the years where she's had to help people in crisis situations.  People who knew her and turned to her for help rather than calling our hotline because they didn't know us but knew her.   So on that basis alone I can understand why Phyllisha might want to record calls on her phone.

Even now I think she's right to do so because she's talked about threats she's received in the past.   So all the more reason why it would be extremely prudent and wise of her to be recording calls.  I don't know much about unions but if it's anything like I've seen in movies like "Hoffa" then I would imagine a lot of people wouldn't be too happy about her forming a union.  I know Sheldon Adelson isn't.  He's notorious for not wanting a union, and especially not wanting a sex worker union because he uses them a lot in his casino business.  Just because I think a union is a good idea for the sex industry - that man has had people threaten me, he's told me I've been "blacklisted" in any media he owns like the Review Journal, etc.  So based on just knowing how many people really don't want a union in the sex industry - frankly she'd be nuts not to be recording calls on her phone because of the threats I'm sure she's receiving for trying to bring a union to us.

Now I didn't take the decision to record all incoming calls from numbers I don't know yet lightly. First of all, I've had a gun pointed at me literally by a pimp demanding to know where someone was at who had left him and I refused to talk.  So I take the confidentiality issues here at one of life and death and I stand behind them literally with my life on the line sometimes.  Because more than once I've a pimp track me down and demand to know where someone who left them has gone to and they don't get a word out of me.

One of the fundamental reasons we choose to go with a 12 step structure is because of confidentiality.  I had a BIG  problem when I started out hotline and that was over the issue of confidentiality.  Someone running from the law could mean I get a warrant slapped on me and how am I going to answer that demand?  There are only a handful of ways you can refuse to answer a subpena or a warrant - and I'm not a priest, doctor or lawyer.  Those are the three main ones.  The other is a reporter trying to protect his sources -but even that's been challenged successfully.

Domestic violence hotline and drug treatment hotlines are covered under confidentiality laws - but the hotline for us, especially a hotline where sometimes the callers are criminals engaging in criminal activity was one I had to figure out how we can protect ourselves from being compelled to talk by a court.  In doing our legal homework we learned that AA was covered under the confidentiality laws - meaning a 12 step group is covered under the confidentiality laws.  So this was one thing we factored into the decision on how to structure our group/hotline.  If we had not gone with the 12 step structure - then we wouldn't have a leg to stand on when hit with a subpena or warrant.

Or this - that of being asked to inform on our members by the CIA, FBI, NSA, and all those alphabets because I have been asked by all of these agencies to do just that.  I have been offered a nice monthly salary to report back on what those who call us say.   I have been more than "offered" but I had a cop in Nevada actually threaten me and demand that I relay information to him on what our members were saying, who they were, who they ran with, etc.  Let me tell you - it was a day that brought back such horrible PTSD memories it took me two weeks to recuperate from the day those three cops stuck me in a car and started threatening me if I didn't report back to them everything I knew going on with our membership to them and I refused.  When Jeane Palfrey died, I had a warrant served on me to get copies of her emails and text messages which I refused also.  The cops spent a year harassing me over this refusal.

Let me explain why also this is such an important issue to me - and that's of our constitutional rights.  How can I ask someone who may be engaged in a criminal activity to call me and talk openly to me if in doing so they're incriminating themselves?   Because for me to do that would be asking them to literally violate their constitutional right not to incriminate themselves.  I mean how would it be to say "call this hotline for help and tell me about your criminal behavior and oh by the way I'm going to report this back to the cops if you do".  No - I can't do that.  So by us being covered on the confidentiality laws, recording the calls or not, they're not going anywhere - then I know callers aren't violating their right to not incriminate themselves.

However - not so with the National Trafficking Hotline.  They are NOT a 12 step group, a domestic violence hotline, a drug treatment hotline, nor a priest, doctor, lawyer, or reporter.   The person answering their hotline is not an ordained minister.  So when you are calling them and you're engaged in a criminal behavior - you are literally being asked to violate your 5th amendment right because Polaris  - very reluctantly mind you - admitted that if someone does discuss a crime with them they are obligated to report it back to law enforcement.   So actually you're less protected as to confidentiality when calling the National Trafficking Hotline than in calling us.  Besides, they get paid by the CIA to report back to them the content of their calls.   Polaris has partnered with Palantir Technologies - who crunches data for the CIA.  We however do not.  We take no money from anyone to relay any information back to anyone.  So recording or not - nothing that comes into our hotline is revealed unless there is a child involved or in immediate danger.

Which raises the question by the way about the confidentiality of what your union knows about it's members if you ask me.  I don't see anything on your site posted addressing the confidentiality issues with respect to the calls to you, your membership, etc.  So like before you get all hopped up about Phyllisha's recordings - can we talk about your confidentiality guidelines for what is said about those who call your union for help?

Now you admit she's the "founder".   But yet I don't think you really truly grasp what a target that's put on her back.  A target for which again I know she's been threatened, she's had things happen to try and intimidate her, and she's had enough things thrown at her to try and stop her from forming the union in the first place I would think you would understand why she'd have to do this to protect not only herself BUT the union.  I mean how do you know someone wouldn't accuse her of something which could have shut down the whole kit and kaboodle before it even got off the ground?  Well you wouldn't understand that position would you because you weren't the person who did found the union then are you?  Real easy to criticize how Phyllisha did what she did after she did it and then you get to run off with it now because that's what it appears like to me is what you're doing.

It's easy to criticize someone who started something you didn't start.  It's not so easy to be the one to start it.  So yes maybe she had good solid reasons to be recording calls and conversations because I'm sure she's not only received threats, but I'm also sure she's had to deal with people setting her up for things.  Things I've seen a lot of in this industry over the years.  I've seen sooooo many of us set up to shut us down over the years - she'd be a complete idiot not to be recording every word she says.

Look at what happened to Dr. Sharon Mitchell and how the AIM clinic got shut down.  When people wanted to get her clinic shut down because they wanted the control she had taken away from her as a leader in this industry - she was framed in my opinion on that bribery accusation.  Something she probably could have defended herself a little better if she had recorded all transactions.

I watched Sharnel Silvey get framed.  She was caring for an elderly man who was dying and he told her to use his card after he died to "buy herself some clothes".  Sharnel set up the first diversion and alternative sentencing program for prostitutes in northern Nevada.  She, at her own expense and at her own risk, was doing outreach within the brothels of Nevada when no one else was.  When someone needed help to get away from a pimp - we were able to go into action.  To avoid jail, keep custody of their kids, not lose their home - because of Sharnel they could go to meetings of her program instead of going to jail if convicted of prostitution charges.  She did a lot of things to help a lot of sex workers and in return she was framed.

After the man died, Joe Conforte asked Sharnel to come to Brazil and help him auction off virgins.  She refused and wanted to continue helping prostitutes in Nevada instead.  Out of nowhere the dead man's family pops up and accuses her of stealing that credit card.  Because she did not record him giving her permission to use that card - she was charged not only with theft but also elder abuse.  Because he was a senior - on her first conviction, with no prior record, she had to serve five years in prison with no parole because of that one accusation for which if she had recorded it - she'd not have gone to prison for five years.

In 2009, people were approaching all of the groups founded by ex-sex workers and offering them $10,000 in donations.  Those who took it, had the person later turn around and claim they were "conned" out of the money.  One by one by one I was getting calls from these women telling me how they had just been arrested for this supposed crime.  I asked each one of them if they had made any recordings of the conversation, was anything in writing - and not a one of them did.  A few of them went to jail and many now have records for phony accusations which were done to try and drive out groups led by actual ex-sex workers so these people funded by Swanee Hunt could instead take over who try and convince the world that porn is "evil" and should be outlawed.

So Phyllisha had better damn well be recording all of her conversations to protect her ass and that of the union.  Now I don't know what she recorded or where because I don't know her well, nor have I heard the tapes but your accusation that they were "illegal" may not be completely accurate.  There are MANY situations where it is in fact legal to record without all parties consent.  Here's a few of those exceptions talked about here - https://www.casp.net/california-anti-slapp-first-amendment-law-resources/statutes/civil-code-section-47/ and here https://oag.ca.gov/privacy/privacy-laws and there's more here - http://www.justanswer.com/law/7wbay-exceptions-ca-recorded-audio-two-party.html

Meaning it's not just flat out wrong in all cases to record someone simply because we're in California. One big exception to the law which gives her the right to record someone without their consent is if she's trying to collect evidence on something in order to put together a criminal case against someone.  No one is going to knowingly incriminate themselves - so the law does allow you to record someone who is trying to harm you.  If you think someone may be going to threaten you with harm - then yes you can record that conversation to get the threat on tape.

If you're in a public place, you have the right to photograph that person as well as record them.  I hate to say it but it's true.  If I'm out in a public restaurant it's legal to record without consent and we saw that in the Planned Parenthood video tape scandal.  Those people got the Planned Parenthood people out into a restaurant and recorded them and broadcast that tape and it was all legal because it was in a restaurant.  Why?  Because you are giving up your privacy when you're in a restaurant.  It's understood other people are going to see you and hear you so you are consenting to that by your presence.  That's how they were able to broadcast the tape - because it was recorded in a restaurant.  The privacy laws only protect you if you "take steps to make the conversation private" in other words.

What bothers me here is a union is supposed to be about protecting those in this industry yet here you are attacking Phyllisha Anne in a very public way.   So who else is going to do something you don't agree with and then you're going to blast them all over the industry?  I'm sorry but "scape goating" is the tool slave owners used to keep the slaves under control, and the Nazi's used also.  You pick out one leader, the strongest ring leader you can find and you hold them up to everyone else and you kill them, beat them, humiliate them or whatever and it sends a message to the rest - you better not piss me off or this is what I'm going to do to you.  First day in jail?  Find the biggest guy and beat the shit out of him and then everyone leaves you alone.  I'm sorry - but this is the tactic bullies use.  I sure don't see you printing any of Phyllisha's response to this accusation in the letter so you're not even allowing her to defend herself or her position here.

So frankly I don't care whether what she did was illegal or not right now.  What I do care about is that this very letter is a tactic used to try and control people.  It's to try and intimidate other people into following your lead and doing what you want them to do.  Frankly I don't think that's what the union is supposed to be about.  You took up a very public forum to attack another sex worker, someone who is trying to give workers more protection and more of a voice and you have openly attacked her.  This is a woman who has her face and name all over social media - yet I don't see even your name at the bottom of this letter so who the fuck are you even?

If you thought what she did was illegal - where's your lawsuit?  I don't see you've filed a complaint against her in a court of law.  I don't see you letting a judge decide if what she did was in fact illegal.  I don't see you filing for a TRO to stop her from recording.  So because YOU think it's illegal that's then just all there is to it?  Again - the way bullies think if you ask me.  

If you're going to attack someone - how about attacking the producers who are trying to get the performers not to wear condoms on a set when they want to use condoms?  How about attacking THAT?  How come I'm not seeing a "list of shame" of producers who have tried to bully and intimidate workers into not using condoms on a set?  I'd like to see that on this page - a list of shame for producers who have been trying to make films where performers are refused to be allowed to use condoms or protection.

How come I don't see you calling out James Deen for his rape of other women in this industry?  I've read that he raped a woman on a set anally until she was torn and was bleeding all over the set.  I've read that the crew APPLAUDED that man after he did this.  I've read one of his victims was threatened by the AVN with a breach of contract lawsuit if she didn't stand next to this man at the AVN instead of them paying for her a lawyer to sue the shit out of him for what he did to her.

Jennifer O'Hare is all over social media claiming she was raped by Dennis Hof.  I don't know if that's true or not but how come you're not talking about it?  There's rumors that Lamar might have even been deliberately drugged and then robbed of $75,000 cash at the ranch.  I don't see you addressing any of Hof's behavior in your forum here.  I mean if you're going to print rumors - how about printing those kinds of rumors?

I'm reading about women being sent home from a shoot because they were insisting they didn't want to perform without a condom.  How about calling out the producers that did this?  I do see you made a statement about Nicki Benz being abused and her 800,000 or so followers.  But frankly I think you did that because she's got over 800,000 followers and you're sucking up.   I mean you should say something - but why am I only hearing about her with all the followers?  How come I'm not hearing about those who have been hurt who have maybe 200 followers?

But what's going on in the James Deen rape accusations?  I'm not seeing a word about that anywhere on your site - but I see a whole page attacking Phyllisha Anne.

Oh and whose bright idea is it to have Melissa Hill leading your "support group" for those "out of the industry"?  Can you answer me that please?  The woman isn't "out of the industry" so how exactly is that supposed to work?  That is no different in my opinion than holding an AA meeting in a bar lead by the bartender who had a drink right before the meeting.  I mean what in the hell is that about?  I joined a "support group" once for ex-sex workers in 1986 called Catharsis.  Everyone in that group was completely fucked up and no one knew what the hell was wrong.

Are you people aware there's a very real thing that for lack of an official name we call it "post prostitution syndrome".  Here's a tape we have online about PPS to explain more about it - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cO-AVboR0eE  I interviewed over 4,000 ex-sex workers from all over the world, men and women, illegal and legal - and in almost every single case, over 90% of those ex-sex workers had very common symptoms.  Here - read the words of Airforce Amy describe what she went through when she tried to simply quit the industry "cold turkey" without proper after care:






Notice Amy talked about "being so depressed she turned to drugs and alcohol" because of the severe depression she went through.  But Melissa Hill wouldn't know about this wall sex workers hit when quitting the industry entirely because she's still working in the industry.  She hasn't gone off to be a doctor or lawyer or something removed from the whole industry.  Belle Knox wrote openly about the suicidal depression she went through when people found out she was in porn.  That's just found out she was in porn.  Other young women have left suicide notes about killing themselves because they couldn't cope with the stigma of people knowing they'd been in porn.

Are you aware that the FBI has changed their whole undercover policy ever since the first FBI agent went undercover into the porn industry?  He went undercover for two years and came out of the industry so mentally fucked up they now revised their own policy to not leave an agent in the industry more than six months - and then after they come out they get special aftercare.

Do you realize that people who are just EXPOSED to the porn industry sometimes need professional psychological treatment?  Here read this about a special therapy system that's been set up for agents who are just EXPOSED to our industry without actually working in it and they get fucked up behind it and need help - http://unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/Law%20Enforcement%20Work%20Exposure%20to%20CP.pdf

So let me get this straight - you have someone who is not out of the business at all yet leading your support group for people who have left the industry?  Soldiers coming back from Iraq need PTSD treatment just as they did during Vietnam.  It's not even all about war as much as it is about adjustment back to the American way of life after having been in another country.  It's about culture shock and believe me leaving the porn industry and going into the world outside of the industry is a huge culture-shock.  When I was on probation and had to stay out of the industry - I had to learn how to not only dress differently, talk differently, but even how to WALK differently!

So are you really going to tell me that there isn't a huge adjustment process that happens when someone leaves the industry totally when for 30 years now I've been seeing people going through the exiting process and I have never ever ever seen someone just up and walk out of this industry who doesn't go through a HUGE adjustment crisis.

Are you even preparing people for that wall they're going to hit when they do quit the industry?  Now before a whole bunch of people STILL IN THE INDUSTRY want to climb down my throat and claim that this isn't true - save it.  You go and quit this business for longer than 24 hours and then you come back and tell me if it was just a breeze and you had no problems at all walking away from this culture.  This is one of the things these trafficking people have completely fucked up is they're making it appear that the only people who have problems and need help to adjust afterwards from sex work are trafficking victims and I'm sorry but that's not the case.

And I don't mean someone who quit the business but then is getting loaded every day either.  Sure I have met PLENTY of people who tell me "oh yeah I quit the industry and I haven't had one problem adjusting" while they're sitting there smoking meth, popping pills, or they're on five different medications while smoking medical marijuana.   I don't mean those who quit the industry but are stoned or drugged out of their minds so they wouldn't know a feeling if it bit them.  I mean quit the business entirely while also not being in a drugged state - then come tell me it's all a piece of cake to just walk out of this industry after it's been your identity for some years.

Why am I bitching about this?  Because one of the reasons I believe there's a need for the union is the very basic fact that those who do leave this industry need help going through that adjustment.  They need exit services.  Whether they were trafficking victims or not, whether they were addicts or not, whether they were sexually abused or not - there are those who aren't any of the above who still need help to go through the exiting process.  They may need vocational rehabilitation which I would like to see the union lobby the state to start doing something about this.

Think this isn't relevant?  You go spend 20 years working at a legal brothel and then one day you get told you're HIV/AIDS positive and suddenly your license is revoked.  Go on - put yourself in that person's shoes right now.  Imagine you just got told you're positive and your license to work as a prostitute is now revoked.  That's it.  No warning.  No pension.  No retirement plan.  No IRA.  Now what?  What the fuck you going to do now?  

That is a fundamental purpose for the union to exist is to make those aftercare and exit services available to members.   Now how are you going to do that when you think it's as simple as having Melissa Hill run a "support group" and that's it?  If you ask me the very fact you're acting like that's all there is is because whoever is running things over there at APAG now isn't Phyllisha.  Phyllisha is a sex worker.  She knows at the bottom of her gut that if she got mangled by a bus accident tomorrow, or became a victim of a horrible fire which disfigured her, or if she God forbid came down with HIV/AIDS - then now what?  What is she going to do?  She's planning on being in this industry the rest of her life.  I doubt she's got a back-up plan or a nursing degree or something to fall back on.  Even if she did have a nursing degree - what if the bus accident cut off one of her legs?  Then what?

Would vocational rehabilitation pay to retrain her to do something other than be in sex work?  I'm sorry but this is a fundamental issue for sex workers and where the union should be thinking about those very things.  So I'm actually deeply offended by this group making it appear that it's not a big issue when it's a CORE issue for why the union should exist - and that's to make sure employers in this industry realize that our careers are like that of dancers and athletes - it came be a short-lived one and one for which special considerations need to be built into the profession and that's where the union is supposed to be addressing those needs.

Which makes me think who is behind this APAG right now might be more for the "owners" than the "workers" in terms like that.  I mean question - how many who are back there are just workers themselves?  I'm asking because I also don't see a list of your officers on your website like I see on the IEAU website.    I see the board of IEAU is that of sex workers - not producers, not owners of companies, not people like Dennis Hof who owns a couple of ranches, not the owner of a string of strip clubs - but workers.  Workers who know the needs of the workers they're representing and defending and trying to make the field a better place for them.

So who exactly are you back there?  What are your roles within the industry?  How much do you know about how absolutely impossible it is to leave the industry should you have to suddenly due to injury or illness?  Christy Mack was horribly beaten.  After she announced she was staying in the industry.

However, she could.  What if War Machine, God forbid, but what if he had poured gasoline on her and lit her on fire as some women have had done to them in this industry?  What if she was so disfigured she couldn't possibly work in this industry again?  I assure you she would need special services to exit this industry even without being injured because there is a study out showing that literally 98% of those who try and leave sex work without the proper after-care fail.  They get clinically depressed, turn to drugs and/or alcohol, or even compulsive gambling as one study talked about, and they can't make the transition.

Those who can't go back wind up on SSI or welfare.  I know because 2/3 of the members of SWA have some kind of autoimmune disease they got from the industry and they're now living on SSI including myself.  I got chronic fatigue syndrome when it first hit the sex industry in the 1980's.  I spent my first year out of sex work laying on my couch because I was too tired to get up and go to bed.

But back to who are you over there running this "union" exactly?  I've learned how to tell red flags about abusers and exploiters and this form of intimidation and control you're exhibiting here is one of them.  You are attacking another member of the industry, a woman who created this very organization according to you out of nothing, at her own expense from what I understand, but I don't see a copy of a lawsuit along with it.

I also happen to know you're wrong - there ARE exceptions to when you can legally record someone in California and I don't see a word of that mentioned here meaning you're not only bullying, shaming, and intimidating another woman in this industry - but you're also misleading your readers and members by falsely claiming there are no exceptions to that rule.

Meaning you're lying to the industry in this letter.  That's all I got to know about the situation right here.  There are situations where one can legally record conversations in California and you aren't mentioning that at all here.  

What's worse is I don't even see a signature at the bottom as to who wrote this attack and misleading accusation.


To top it off, you're attacking her board for not "muzzling" Phyllisha simply because you asked them to.  Again - did you serve anyone with any legal papers?  Was a formal legal demand letter sent to anyone there at the  IEAU?  Can you please tell me what the other board members at the  IEAU have to do with what Phyllisha does?  What exactly is it you're calling them out for not doing?  Not what exactly?

Meaning you're not just attacking Phyllisha - you're attacking the whole board of IEAU over this something you say is illegal but I don't see you filing any legal papers about it.  I mean is this how you're going to represent your members?

Shame on you.

I don't see a signature here but I'm willing to lay down a $100 bet that whoever wrote this letter was a man.  Yet another man beating up on a woman in this industry and shaming her for protecting herself, and her baby, and then the other women who are standing behind her.   Which I'm sorry but I think that it's things like that why the union was started in the first place.  Meaning from where I'm standing it looks like some men came in and took this group away from Phyllisha and now they're trying to cover up what they did by victim blaming her.

If I'm wrong - then please please how about a statement about how exactly it was you're now running APAG and Phyllisha got shut out?  I mean I saw shit like this when the white man comes into America and kicks out the native American's for being "on his land".  Then I see all these westerns growing up where the white man is protecting himself from the "savage indian attacks" without addressing that it's the Indians who were the ones being ran off their land not the other way around.   So please - how about more of an explanation of how this split exactly took place because that's what this letter looks like to me - the white man talking about the horrible indians who attacked them!

Oh yes I know the tactics well.  I remember one time kicking the ass of a pimp who was beating up on my girlfriend and when the cops came he was crying how I beat the shit out of him.  I remember how my ex-husband went around all of our friends crying how "mean I was for taking his baby and leaving him" but of course leaving out of that whole conversation I did so after he broke down my front door and threatened to kill my daughter and myself.  That's what this looks like to me - so please - love to hear your side of what the break was about.

Along with a copy of the lawsuit against Phyllisha for these illegal recordings.  If you're not going to file a lawsuit then I think you need to retract that letter attacking other women in this industry while claiming you're there to represent their needs.  Also from a legal viewpoint.  Because I don't see the words "in my opinion" in these accusations.  Plus you're wrong - there ARE exceptions to the tape recording laws in California.  So what I see you're doing is defaming Phyllisha and even the IEAU which could also be considered a form of "economic interference".  In other words, you wouldn't be trying to steer prospective members towards your group over hers with these accusations now would you because that is also a crime.

You know how to reach me - so please enlighten me as to who is exactly the person who wrote this letter and what type of work they do in this industry?



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