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Showing posts with label #transinamerica. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #transinamerica. Show all posts

Saturday, October 10, 2015

NEBRASKA SEX TRAFFICKING AND DOJ GRANTS

Dear Ms. Gemee:

My name is Jody Williams.  I'm the founder of the modern day sex trafficking movement itself.  You can verify this by clippings I have up at www.hightechmadam.com   The "brothel" I was charged with having was the first "safe house" for adults.  We had to set up our own because the police didn't even believe trafficking was real - let alone would they do anything or have anywhere safe for us to go.  I couldn't explain that back then as a defense.  

Wanting to change this is what went into the founding in 1987 of our hotline, the 12 step program, and the first program in Los Angeles then Mayor Tom Bradley set up with the courts and jails as the first "alternative" sentencing program that recognized there were in fact victims years before we got federal recognition with the Trafficking Act of 2000 passing.  

Needing cheap housing - I married in 1994 and relocated to a small town outside of Omaha, Nebraska.  Once settled into Blair, Nebraska, we set about buying homes for $5,000 and $10,000 that we turned into "safe houses" for adults (male, female and transgender) where we took victims from the east and west coasts of these trafficking rings and set them up in the midwest into new lives.  

My husband's nephew at this time was the Omaha District Attorney.  Boys Town was there and still reeling from the Omaha Franklin scandal.  Meaning we were having to help young boys escape Boys Town, and local politicians in Nebraska and Iowa which we'd put on planes to send back to Children of the Night.  The only program I was aware of anyway that accepted males and transgenders under the age of 18 years old that also provided proper medical supervision for those who were on, or forced to be on, hormones.  

Realize this was in 1994 before there was federal recognition - meaning we had to fund all of this work ourselves and do it in a world that still didn't recognize any of this as "real" yet.  When I moved back there they were still locking up boys in hospitals for observation if they said these things were happening to them.  Made more complicated by the fact the whole state had three psychiatrists in the whole state - and those three were very devoutly "anti" LGBT.  

When I first read the legislature out there was going to go after "harsher penalties" for traffickers I knew this would mean more dead witnesses.  So I contacted the NE Legislature who agreed with me and changed their course.  I was told they were going to set up the first ever programs to help victims back there after many long conversations with the legislators back there, along with some of the local police and churches. 

We had a great working relationship UNTIL they got the first federal grant.  The minute they got that grant, and the task force was set up - suddenly everyone acted like they didn't even know my name.  The ACLU vs. Catholic Bishops lawsuit win and the Supreme Court decision that I also helped to bring to be - I thought would do something to change the fact that suddenly these people who came into a field I carved out of nothing were acting like they didn't even know my name because of obtaining money from the Catholic Church for distancing themselves, and anyone they worked with - from anyone who was not putting religious rhetoric before the needs of the victims.  

After these grants started coming into Nevada - I'm suddenly talking to women who are so emotionally distressed because of a total lack of recovery services appropriate and effective for their situation (if all we needed was an AA meeting - I wouldn't have formed SWA now would I have?) that they couldn't even maintain a phone conversation with me thinking on their own for two minutes who are telling me there "are no resources" for victims back there.  When I said "what are you talking about - of course there's resources" (we have three houses back there mind you that my ex-husband still owns and we use) - these people then refuse to speak to me because that idea clearly interferes with their fund raising and grant writing projects.  

Now I can't even get services to victims through these programs - nor can I even get a return phone call now from the very people who I put in their minds to start trafficking programs in the first place.  

Just thought you should know how well your grant money is being spent.  Prostitutes are having police threaten to take away their children if they don't prosecute their husbands and the father of their children as "pimps".  I don't call that progress.  Especially when I can't even get anyone on the phone to talk to me about what "real" trafficking looks like in Nebraska because I assure you it's very different back there than it is in California or NY.  

Thanks for your time.

Jody Williams
www.sexworkersanonymous.com
(702) 468-4529

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

THE COMMON ENEMY

The enemy of my enemy is my friend is an ancient proverb which suggests that two opposing parties can or should work together against a common enemy. The earliest known expression of this concept is found in a Sanskrit treatise on statecraft dating to around the 4th century BC, while the first recorded use of the current English version came in 1884.[1][2] Some suggest that the proverb is of Arabic origin.[citation needed]

I look around me to see who "hijacked" the modern day sex trafficking movement and morphed it into the new "war on drugs" only on sex workers and the African American community.   I see the same people, the same tactics, the same names even, in each one of these cases.

I see the faked ACORN hidden camera video where a reporter pretended to be a pimp to try and set up Obama to appear to be supportive of sex trafficking.  The reality came out in court that the agent was stalling for the police to arrive by "playing along" with this reporter.  He was fined $100,000 for this hidden camera stunt because it was recorded in California where the "two party" consent rule applies to hidden recordings.

While most people remember the ACORN videotape - many don't know about the lawsuit and the whole story that tried to set up Obama.  Obama by the way has done more to try and help the sex trafficking victims than any other president in our history.  Don't even get me started on the Bush family and their involvement in sex trafficking - let alone their outright hijacking of the movement.

Because that is what happened.  We saw the Trafficking Act of 2000 passed.  I for one thought that meant we had "arrived" now we had federal recognition.  I know that in early 2000, Sex Workers Anonymous dominated this country as far as helping those men and women (and transgenders) leave the sex industry, and also escape trafficking.  Any one for any reason who wanted help to leave any part of the sex industry, legal or not, found that help through chapters we had set up in every major city of the USA by that time.

Then Randall Tobias came in with the TVRA of 2003.  I didn't even understand the implications of what that was for the longest time because of how it was worded.  President Bush came in right behind him and declared that "no money would be issued in federal grants except through faith based groups" which between the both of them served to completely exclude us from everything and everyone.  Overnight we were shunned, ejected, shut out, and a subject people were threatened with being fired or losing their funding if they even spoke to us.

Did we have any "proof"?  Yes.  Jeane Palfrey stepped up with her "Black Book" to show that Randall Tobias and Dick Cheney were in fact connected to sex trafficking in other countries WHICH EXPLAINED WHY THEY WANTED ANYONE WHO KNEW ANYTHING ABOUT THIS SUBJECT EXCLUDED.   Before she had a chance to explain what those names in her book meant (not that they were 'johns" but that they were the ones who were involving her in sex trafficking as they have other madams in the past pre-internet days).  For that, she was murdered in my opinion just as Gary Webb was also murdered for trying to raise awareness about what's really going on out here.

But they booted us out - and took over. Not just within the system - but in the major media.  Pre-2000 - there was not one news show, documentary, talk show, or even a film made about this subject where we were not brought in as technical consultants if not to supply them with people to interview.    After 2000 - I couldn't even get a producer on the phone.  Reporters who did write about us were fired for doing so after 2000.

Looking back - I realize we were given just enough rope to get these people in the door.  Then we got shoved right out of the way and they took over.  Just as I've seen the "war on drugs" was about getting control of the African American community - so too now has these hijackers now been using this movement we started, and they hijacked, to also now serve as a smoke screen to still attack the African American communities in ways that if done directly wouldn't fly today.

As well the LGBT community and the Jews.  Prior to us being booted out of this movement essentially - we included men, women, and transgenders as well as the Jewish community and the Buddhists.  We did outreach to Heidi Fleiss for example who is Jewish, and we've done many an Asian massage parlor outreach who are predominately Buddhist by faith.  We've also always included transgenders in our programs within the jails - going into the jails regularly to make sure they're getting their medications, and treated properly by the staff.  Show me one of these people's "safe houses" now that include transgenders or have a kosher food plan and I'll eat my hat!

So now they're attacking the African American community - I've written to the NAACP to see if they would open up a dialogue with me about this new modern form of racial targeting and media brainwashing.  No answer.

I've written to the LGBT Center in Hollywood, California and in New York over the fact that transgenders are being denied the same benefits that straight women are being afforded by these sex trafficking programs - including payment for their burials and vocational rehabilitation.  No answer.

After witnessing the hidden video stunt being pulled on Planned Parenthood and their media slandering campaigns - I've written to them about us having the same common enemy and maybe we should open up a dialogue.  Because we saw in the ACLU vs. Catholic Bishops lawsuit the reason why we were being denied access to these very victims we raised awareness even existed in the first place was the churches fear we'd help them get abortions (which isn't even true).  So I wrote to Planned Parenthood and not only did I not get an answer - their local branches on Facebook blocked me!

I then read how PETA even got set up by the same police station that I have a victim claiming slapped her with two false arrests for prostitution, where an officer threatened me and a Chief refuses to work with me on the case in Pasadena, California.  I wrote to them to open up a dialogue about what happened to them with the Pasadena Police.  No answer.

Gloria Allred is championing for women who were actresses raped by Bill Cosby.  I've written her about the victims of sex trafficking at the hands of Snoop Dogg and his CONFESSED pimping tour of 2003 spoken about in Rolling Stone.  No answer.

I've written to Sex Workers Outreach Project who we used to partner with on outreach projects in the 1980's and 1990's.  Those who wanted to stay in sex work but who were being targeted by traffickers were the ones we were helping - so we had a "common enemy".  When pimps would kidnap a sex worker and force her to work in a brothel or outright sell her to someone, but the police would refuse to investigate because it was "prostitute" that was kidnapped/sold - that was our common enemy and we had a united front over the fact ALL people should be able to call the police for help - no matter what their profession.  I even wrote to their chapters where these trafficking projects had set up that violated the womans' constitutional rights with ones like Project Rose and the Phoenix SWOP.  No answer.  (Oh I take that back - I got a letter this week taking credit for THEM "shutting down Project Rose".  Which is funny because it was shut down after I slapped them with a "cease and desist order".  I did ask their chapter head to please show me exactly how THEY got it shut down - and I haven't heard an answer back yet.)

So guess what folks?  These groups that have been receiving a lot of money from your personal donations and your personal support because you THINK they're out there supporting you as the common folks, the minorities, the disabled, the sex workers, you're female, etc.

If these groups were to band together to defeat who has taken over the major media, and our political system right now - we'd defeat these people in a week.  Problem solved.  But they don't.

Now you tell me why you think that is.  If there was a bully on the school yard against 10 other kids and those 10 kids banded together that bully would be toast.  So you tell me why these groups are not banding together against the very same people who are targeting them.  Think about that before you cut one of these groups another check, or think they're 'on the job".

Sunday, September 13, 2015

RESCUE IN MIAMI

You want to help save souls?  Two young women, 24 and 23 years old, who have one more night at a hotel in Miami, Florida.   No pimp so there's no trafficking.  They have already asked the hotel if they'd hire them and they're only hiring Hispanics - not African American girls.  These women have been hooking since they were kids to survive and have tried everything.  This woman has put in applications at car washes, Walmart, etc. and she says they keep hiring illegal aliens.  She tried real estate and got ripped off.  She's at the end of her rope and cried the whole hour we spent talking on the phone.  She's even willing to go into drug treatment to get help.  She's "done".  But she needs help with one more night at the hotel.  She needs to go somewhere, get money for the hotel, a job, etc.  Call me to get her contact information and help.  www.sexworkersanonymous.com   This is urgent - we have until noon tomorrow to come up with something for them.
Okay - I've now emailed everyone I know to see if anyone can help.  No response.  One woman said she'd "post this on her facebook", while a survivor told me she'd do something after she attended her noon AA meeting.


In the meantime, these two women told me they are now sitting in the lobby of their hotel.  I placed an ad on Craigslist.  





I called the Catholic Charity Chapman Partnership.  Their 877 number doesn't connect to my phone for some reason.  All I can think of is it's blocked from a 702 area code phone number.  I called their office line and was told I had to call the 877 number for emergency assistance.  I left them an email since I can't get through on their emergency line.

I called the Mother Teresa Mission of Charity - and their phone number is disconnected.


I called the Salvation Army shelter number at 9:00 a.m. my time - which is noon Miami time and they said "no one was available to take my call" and hung up on me.


I called  www.miamirescuemission.com and got a woman on the line who said for "emergency housing they have to wait until 10 am tomorrow morning to call for an intake".  That doesn't sound like "emergency" to me.


I called the Miami police 

at (305) 476-5423 and asked them for the phone number to emergency housing for women.  
They gave me a hotline for "victim services". 

I asked them for help and they gave me 3 other phone numbers to call.


One of the phone numbers was for the Salvation Army.  Their operator told me to get emergency housing, one has to call the "homeless hotline" to get a referral for help.  Funny the police didn't know that nor did victim services.

I called the hotline at 305 375 2273.  I got a recording that said to "leave a message" but the voicemail was full.

I called the Salvation Army number back - only now no one is answering the phone.

This might be why I'm not getting anywhere.  I went onto facebook to look for homeless resources - and found this http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/article25850623.html

I got a response to the Craigslist ad from a woman in recovery saying she'll work with these women.  I told them to call her and we'll see what happens.

UPDATE:  I did get this facebook a few minutes ago:


I have put them in touch with this officer and will post back what happens. 

I'm also asking the woman for permission to post a tape of her call.  I would like people to hear what I woke up to this morning - and then follow this case.    Will report back with updates.  This is at 12:18 p.m. on 9/13/15.  She had called me at 7:00 a.m.  Currently, she found a hotel for $40 for the night she's in until the morning until we get her squared away.  

UPDATE:  7:30 p.m.  The cop told them he can't "do anything until the morning" and the woman who said she could help turned out she wasn't in a position to help.  She was staying with other people who said "no".  So they are paid up until tonight at the hotel and everyone is saying they won't help these two women either because they don't have any money, don't know anyone, or they refuse to help them because they say "I'm a bitch".  I don't understand the logic of how being a bitch to me by saying I'm a bitch has anything to do with these two women in crisis who don't want to go out on the track to pay rent anymore.  

Back to the phones.

UPDATE 9/15/15 at 8:45 a.m.  When I left this woman to sleep - I had instructed her to do the following things in the morning:

8:00 a.m. she was supposed to call the commander back about getting into a trafficking program.

10:00 a.m. she had to call the homeless hotline to do an intake. 

Both of these calls I could not make for her since she is over 18, I'm not her legal guardian, and they're going to ask personal information such as her ID number, social security number, etc.  

I had sent her a list of nanny "live in" jobs that had her own room, and provided a car for the job in what appeared to be photos of very nice families with children - no single men.  My thoughts were many of us have moved into those kinds of jobs and done well since they are furnished, they have a car, there is food in the house, and everything one needs is right there.

Then if she still didn't have any help - she was to call Social Services for help.  

I was worried it might take time to get her some type of help because of the homeless crisis going on in Miami I read about in the news.  I knew they could not lock her out legally without a lockout notice at the motel which we could fight in court to stay any legal eviction.  However, that does not stop motel owners from doing illegal lock-outs.  So I told her she could not leave the room at any time nor open the door if anyone but police knocked because I know landlords do illegal lock-outs all of the time.  I have had them do it to me more than once.  This is why I made contact with the Commander also.  I told her if they tried to illegally lock her out - she could now call the Commander to make sure he did not allow this to happen.  

But I was still worried about a time delay in getting her help.  I was not receiving any cash help from anyone.  To make matters worse, I had my own problems.  Because of helping her - I had left my own cell phone for our hotline go off.  I figured "if God wants it on - it will be put back on" and I concentrated on helping this woman.  What worried me however was the people that would be calling me back to help her on the phone that was now disconnected.  

Sure enough - the phone went off.  I got a facebook from someone saying "I just tried to call and your phone was off" about 2:00 a.m. I told the truth - I didn't have the money for the phone.  I don't know if he wants me to use his name yet - so I'll just say a very nice man sent over enough to pay for her motel for one night and my cell phone bill for the month also.  Wow.  God provides if you do the right thing every time.  A righteous man stumbles 7 times and gets back up but a wicked man - well you know the rest.

Anyway, I then stayed up until 4:50 a.m. my time.  I texted her to see she was awake to make the call to the commander - and she was.  I crashed thinking she would make the calls.  Because I had been up all night - I missed an appointment with a producer I had for an interview with a reality show - but oh well.  I got some sleep and then got up to check on her.  

She reported she called the commander at 7:58 a.m. and he was not in - and then she fell asleep.  So the homeless intake didn't get done either.   Okay now what?  It's now after 5 pm and the only thing I could think of was to call upon the Mormon Church.  They have a homeless emergency outreach program anywhere they are.  So I started telling her about this.  

Why didn't I pay her rent another day - because I wanted to talk to her more first.  I wanted to see if she was still with the program, or it was truly self destructive and her setting herself up to go back to the streets.  As I'm telling her how to reach out to the Mormons - she starts telling me how this is too much trouble, she doesn't like how I'm doing this, and starts asking me for the following:

She wants me to "do it for her" - everything.  She wants housing, food, clothing to go look for work in the real estate field while she sets about to rebuild her real estate career for her and her sister. She wants me to stop texting other people and get on the phone with her and offer her emotional support.  She's telling me this while my phone is going off with text messages from people offering help and phone numbers.  

When I explained to her we are a 12 step group and that I can't "do it for her" and take care of her like a husband or a parent - that all I can do is show her how to get onto her feet like I got onto my feet (I left the sex industry with no car, no money, no job, no training, no ID, homeless, on probation, and coming off a $2,000 a day drug habit with no drug treatment center willing to admit a female addict prostitute without money or insurance, and the only homeless shelter telling me I could "sleep on a chair in the church" because they were "out of beds" - and I GOT OUT.  

I begged my mother and grandmother to allow me to sleep in my grandmother's living room.  I slept on a foam mat on the living room floor.  I enrolled in computer school and waitressed for money I turned over to my grandmother so I wouldn't smoke the money.  I let my mother drive me to and from school and work.  I let my sponsor drive me to daily NA meetings.  I did what my sponsor told me to do.  After I got my computer degree in six months, I got a job.  My grandmother bought me a blue suit to interview in as I had no clothes.  I wore that same suit all my first week until I got a check and could buy more clothes.  Thirty days later - I moved into a $99 move in special apartment on the whore stroll with a 13 inch black and white TV, an orange crate, and a mattress that was left in the dumpster the manager said I could have I sprayed with Lysol.  That was 1985.

As I'm talking to her and three other people - she starts telling me this is "too hard" for her and "too embarassing" and she "doesn't want to talk to a cop" and yada yada yada.  When I remind her if she hooks and gets arrested then no one will be able to help her sister she said "oh well" basically.  Okay at that point - I'm not going to pay her rent and let her go out hooking on this man's money.  I wait to see what she's going to do and she basically blows me off because I'm not giving her what it is she wants - which is the rent paid for, cash money wired to her for food, and no job to pay for her rent, with her not having called on one job.

To double check I asked her "did you call on any of the nanny jobs?" to which the answer was a bunch of excuses.  

THIS is why AA says they are not the alcoholics "banker".  When Bill Wilson was opening up his home to drunks who were using him as a flop house - no one got sober.  When he started saying that all he could do was offer his "experience, strength and hope" that's when people got sober.  

I don't care if I have a million in the bank - I can't help this woman financially if she's not interested in hearing my "experience, strength and hope" of how she's going to get out of sex work.  This is not about paying her rent.  This is about how is she going to leave sex work, and not return.

Only SWA has "one requirement for membership" which is a "desire to leave the sex industry".  At this point, I'm not hearing that desire out of her.  Meaning I have to retreat.  

I gave her some phone numbers she could call in the morning after she had some sleep in case she changed her mind about what she was going to do.  What I was hearing was that she wanted to go back to sex work rather than deal with all this transition. 

Okay.  She's an adult and that's her choice.  I wished her the best of luck, again I gave her some phone numbers to call of some social workers, and bowed out.  I told this donor what had happened and went to go do the laundry and walk the dogs.  

I got another day clean and out of sex work.  

UPDATE:  As you can tell by the above - it sounded like she was opting to go back to street prostitution instead of all of this stress of making the jump to get out.  I had left it with her to "please get some sleep before you make any decisions" which it turns out she did.  

In the meantime, we got two donations from people to help us out.  We received a $25 donation from Denise, and $100 from Benjamin.  Benjamin said to "pay your cell phone bill" because my phone was cut off at midnight just as I was organizing this rescue.  The rest he said we could use for her motel.  Which we paid the cell phone for $46 and the hotel for one night came to $47.  That left us with $32 left in the operating budget.

I didn't hear from anyone at first but the sister.  We sometimes ask truck drivers to help us with long distance transportation.  The sister wanted to go into drug treatment, and there is free treatment now being offered in another state.  The only catch however is she wanted me to be the one to walk her into treatment.  So I agreed to meet with the driver in this certain city by a certain date and time.  Problem was how to get there.  Gasoline in my car costs me $50 to get there.  That's without food for the 12 hour round trip and if I need help with a flat tire, oil, etc., then it's more.  

So I needed to get my hands on at least $20 more to make the trip.  Every account I had would have required me to transfer the paypal money to it to have it in cash in time to leave to go and pick up this woman.  The only way I could think of to get the cash in hand to buy gasoline would be if I could wire the money to myself.  But the banks were all telling me 2 to 3 days.  I normally ask a friend to help me in situations like this who is on our board, but he was traveling for work and on an airplane.  ll I could think of to do was to return to Benjamin and ask him if I could paypal him some money that he could then in turn wire me.  He agreed.

I had enough gas to get to my destination - but not enough to get back home.  Benjamin said he was having problems wiring me for the money from online and he'd have to go into the store with cash - which he would do "after work".  I agreed - only then someone attacked my facebook page.  Meaning they shut down my facebook page upon receipt of my drivers' license.  I discovered this by my phone blowing up from SWA members saying "did you know your facebook is down?" while I was sleeping and preparing for this trip.

I contacted Benjamin from my other FB account to let him know that despite the page being down - I was here.  THIS is why I have more than one account.  Pimps routinely attack the account - but by having other accounts it allows me to stay in touch with people during rescue operations.    Only I'm not hearing an answer and the time is coming up for me to leave to meet the one sister in time.  Finally I have no choice but to leave anyway and hope that God will sort this out.

I arrive in Vegas and Western Union tells me there's no money.  I reach out to Benjamin asking for the tracking number.  He then says he didn't go to WU because my FB account was shut down.  However, my FB account wasn't shut down until midnight in his time zone - a time by which he would have gone to WU prior.  Fine.  I ask him to go now and do it only he says "you're calling me a liar" and blocks me.  

Great.

I'm now hours from home unable to get home and he's blocked me.  What am I supposed to do now?  Panhandle?  That's going to be a great thing to do in front of a woman I'm asking to "trust me".  So I went on the offensive.  I posted about what had just went down on this blog.  Benjamin was insisting that since he had "donated $100 - this $50 was his".  No it wasn't.  First of all, he'd already given it to me.  Second, I had spent the money as he had asked me to - on the hotel and the cell phone.  There was a whopping couple of bucks left after I did this - not $50.  Meaning that $50 was mine he had just walked off with and blocked me.

After I posted the blog post - I went about trying to let his friends know about how Benjamin treats people in a jam.  Only I can only find one "real" friend.  The rest appear to be not people who appear to know him personally.  I told this woman what had happened and instead of asking me for any proof of my accusation - she lashed out at me to "drop it because it's not healthy".  Real easy for her to say when she's not stranded out of state without gas home at the moment and a newcomer arriving any minute.

Benjamin finds out about the blog post and goes on the offensive.  He says he will wire me the money IF I issue him a verbal apology.  I offer a written one.  I'm not at home and not going to talk on the phone I use during rescues.  He insists that he wants to "hear my voice" giving him an apology.  This makes no sense to me.  Besides, frankly at this point I don't trust him.  

He then calls the hotline from a blocked number thinking he's going to reach me.  Instead he reaches another member of SWA where he then goes on the attack of me.  His directive for some reason is to speak to me directly.  He then starts blasting her with the fact that "this is all a misunderstanding" and that I have "defamed" him.  She counters with "so you've sent the money?"  He scurries off.

One of the other members of SWA hears about this and decides to rip into him.  Who would do this?  It's not making any sense to be honest.  She lets him know if he doesn't send this money to get me home - she's going to personally make sure  everyone online knows about what happened.  

Within two minutes of her message sent to him - Benjamin contacts the hotline with the WU tracking number.  Okay then on that front.  

I get this one sister checked into a residential drug treatment program.  I know this group and they will make sure she gets an apartment upon getting out, and work.  I've seen them churning out addicts out of the system in this town before.  I also know people in this group that I can call to keep an eye on her progress.

I then reach the first sister who contacted me I thought we had lost.  She tells me she had thought about going back but changed her mind.  Instead she called the local Mormon church I had suggested she get in touch with.  Most Mormon churches in large cities have a "homeless emergency assistance" person or office.  I have never had them let me down in an emergency.  They've been helping me with rescues for the whole time I've been doing this.  Sure enough - they had a family that agreed to take her in and help her get on her feet.  She was with them now.  When I hadn't heard from her - she was on her way to this family.

She came to our Sunday phone meeting.  That was awesome.  Another member who came to the phone meeting says to her "I'm only a two hour drive from you" and agrees to work with her.  So mission accomplished - we have a local SWA member with "time" who will walk through this with her, and she has a place to stay while she goes through the transition out of the sex industry, and to stay clean.  Her sister is now checked into a residential treatment program.

I have enough gas to get home.  Once again - when something is God's will - we've had the "power to carry it out".  Doesn't mean we did it "gracefully" - but it got done.  

As for Benjamin - we wouldn't have done the rescue without his help.  I wouldn't have had the phone on to organize the rescue without his help.  So he may be a "reluctant" help - but he was a true help.

I want to thank Denise for also making this rescue possible from In Step Residential Treatment Center.  Truly their people really care - or this woman wouldn't have helped me.  That's a rare thing to find these days!  

Thursday, August 27, 2015

THE RISK OF FOCUSING ONLY ON TRAFFICKING VICTIMS

When we started Sex Workers Anonymous - we have always stood on the fact of "not caring where you came from, what you did, who you worked with, how much you made, etc.".   Nor have we focused on why someone entered the industry.  To us - it's like asking an addict or alcoholic to make a distinction about why they started drinking and/or using, or even to make a distinction about how they got the alcohol and/or chemicals.  I mean does it matter if the addict got their fix by a legal prescription or by stealing the drugs?  Isn't what we're supposed to care about when they come to us ONLY about helping them to transition out of sex work?

Which is one of the reasons why we strongly denounce the focusing of resources ONLY upon trafficking victims when it comes to helping a man or women to transition out of sex work.  We also don't believe that getting someone out of sex work is about just offering drug treatment and job training.  To prove our point - let's talk about the transgender issue that's going on in the news with now with respect to Cait Jenner.

Now we can all see that Bruce Jenner had enough money on hand already to pay for the surgeries, hormones, doctors, clothing, etc. without resorting to sex work.  However, that's not the case for the many transgenders I've come to know who are in the sex industry.  I've come to know many who have gone through the transition - many who are still going through the transition.  Trust me - work becomes an issue.  Not just to pay for the transition - but just to pay the rent.

First of all, many surgeons require that one live as the sex they're transitioning into for at least a year.  So if they're a man transitioning into being a woman - they need to live as a woman.  However, many employers are not very understanding about an employee who is wearing a dress while sporting a 5 o'clock shadow.  There's also the question of where is this money going to come from for the surgery, the new clothing, even legal fees for name changes, etc.  Nor are many landlords very open minded either.  So it's not like someone going through this can just get a job or an apartment anywhere like other people can -  so even the simple basic things can be an issue.

It's very easy to fall back upon the sex industry to pay for the transition - especially when most of the transgenders are young.  Especially when the category of the 1/2 man 1/2 woman is very popular within the sex industry.  Not just for physical sex but even on the webcam categories.  Many of the webcam sites, as well as many strip clubs, report that the "lady boys" are their most popular categories.  Even with the S&M communities - the idea of a mistress who is a combination of male and female are quite popular.

Now I'm not saying that all transgenders are prostitutes.  Cait Jenner proves that this is not the case across the board.  Nor do many transgenders choose to enter into sex work to pay for their transition.  But the fact remains that while going through the transition - just paying the rent becomes difficult.  I refer again to a short interview I had with Mya Taylor who is in the film "Tangerine" out right now who reported that many of the transgenders she's known have resorted to sex work to both pay for the transition as well as to support themselves when going through the awkward stages.

Again not always by choice.  We have an interview here for example of one of our members who was thrown out of his house at very young age when his parents found out he wanted to go through the change.  http://www.blogtalkradio.com/stopsextrafficktalk/2013/03/14/transgender-hiv-trafficking-survivor-speaks  Not having finished school, and not even being old enough to get a work permit - this young boy had to eat.  So sex work became a way for him to support himself when everyone else had abandoned him - and to also pay for his sex change.  This is more common than you might think as we get many members who report to us their families abandoned them when they found out they wanted to go through the change.  You also can't just go to any group or foster home - without finding yourself being beaten, raped, tortured, abused, etc.  So yes in some cases living on your own and working in the sex industry does become a safer option for you.

Even after the transition - questions are going to come up with employers and landlords.  In a bad economy with 1,000's of applicants - many won't hire someone who has gone through such a change for one reason or another.  Health even can become a factor.  I've known many transgenders who have had difficulty adjusting to the hormones - leading to a lot of time spent not able to work.  Which is another plus about the sex industry - you get clients, or regulars, who will often help you through these times because they care about you.

Now trafficking is a fact of life with anyone - male, female or transgender.  But the reality is that sex trafficking is very minimal with respect to transgenders for a few reasons.  One being that as a man to begin with - they're strong.  Strong enough to defend themselves physically if threatened and/or attacked.  So they're not likely to be so easily physically threatened like a tiny 90 pound woman might be by a pimp.

Second, they're not as prone to the emotional deception pimps use.  Nor can they be knocked up and saddled with a kid that ties them to the pimp for 18 years or more like they do when it comes to females.  It's just harder to traffick men vs. women because also of the way we're raised also.  Women tend to be more submissive and raised to sort of let themselves be dominated by men - but not the men who are transitioning into women.

It's also about the clients.  While there is a huge pool of clients who get off on the idea of seeing a woman who is being forced to see them, and degraded in such a manner as this - usually the clients who want to see transgenders are not into seeing this kind of degradation.  So there's also just less demand for trafficked transgenders.

Within the pimp communities - it's not a sign of respect to be trafficking in transgenders.  You won't see a lot of attention giving to a transgender pimp at say the "Pimp n Ho Ball" for example.  In some circles it's even an insult between pimps like "oh he is so bad he can only pimp transgenders".

Not that it's not done at all.  One of our early members was Mike.  He was sold at 8 years old.  The gang that bought him would dress him up like a girl, and fed him hormones in his morning juice.  The reason was the wealthy men who bought him could explain a young girl traveling with them easier than they could a young boy.  So when he'd travel with his clients - he'd always be dressed like a girl so as to throw off the press about who he was or why he was there.  Mike was also being prepared to be forced to go through the change - but killed his pimp when he was 13 years old because he didn't want to be forced to go through the change.

Now I want you to imagine how you've been in sex work to cope, and pay for, the transition for many years.  Only now you're there.  You've found a place to live and have a career and settled into your new life.  Now it's time to quit sex work.  But it's not an easy adjustment.  Where do you go for help to go through this transition now from sex work back into other work?

www.sexworkersanonymous.com

http://www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/Cook-County-Jail-works-on-transgender-policies-/42906.html