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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

CAGED NO MORE - LETTER WE SENT THE PRODUCERS

We are the program who founded the sex trafficking movement itself back in the 1980's.  We created the first safe house for adults, the first hotline for adults, the first program that went into the courts, the police, the universities, and demanded that these victims be recognized as existing and to stop treating them as criminals.   Meaning we put together the first alternative to incarceration program in this country for these victims.  We published the first "Recovery Guide" written by survivors for survivors after interviewing over 5,000 survivors across this country, and into five other countries over a period of five years.  We are the people who helped build the foundation for federal recognition of this issue meaning that instead of being treated as criminals - money was able to be used for the government to provide services for victims.  Our program is the oldest and largest program of survivors, and we have answered FIVE TIMES more calls on our hotline than the Polaris National Trafficking Hotline to date.  Your movie in no way has acknowledged our existence - meaning it's the same to us as a movie on alcoholism that in no way acknowledges Bill Wilson or Alcoholics Anonymous.

If someone cares about the treatment of an alcoholic - they at least know about Bill Wilson and Alcoholics Anonymous in order to make sure they are providing that person with the best treatment possible.  Your production company, and the people you have featured in this film, in no way have contacted our program, asked to see any of our written materials, nor asked for our technical advice or consult in any manner.  We have been told by survivors across the country that the film is "sensationalist" and in no way reflects their experiences.   I do know that not only have we been operating since 1987, but that our current database of survivors shows 190,000 members.  We have 50,000 subscribers to our blog, and chapters of our program meet across the USA, into Canada, Australia, England, Costa Rico, France, Russia, and we're about to launch into Mexico because of the HIV epidemic once we get our materials finished being translated into Spanish.  Our hotline has answered over 500,000 phone calls and that's not counting the letters and emails we've received, nor the number of inmates who are working their programs through our "step study mail order" program for healing.

Our program was studied over a 10 year period of time, and said study was published by Professor Sharon Oselin in "Leaving Prostitution" where survivors quoted us as "saving their lives".  We have also been independently researched by reputable reporters such as Bob Herbert and John Quinones, who wrote glowing reports about us.  In fact, John devoted a whole chapter to me in "Heroes Among Us" in 2009.  It was also a report I helped provide survivors for that verified to the State Dept. sex trafficking was real in 2000 and was real within the legal sex industries in 2007.

But your film says nothing about our past work, nor talks about our hotline, nor program, which currently is the only program where any victim of trafficking can ask any judge in any court in the USA to attend our program instead of being incarcerated without special courts having to be set up for them to avail themselves of this service. Then once they've attended our program for over a year - their criminal records can be expunged as we've done with many members over these now 29 years we've been operating.

We put together the first training program for counselors on how to work with this community effectively in 1991 after studies were done showing that our work was preventing the 98% relapse rate within two years that survivors were showing beforehand in recovery.  This program was offered at Mission College, and accredited for continuing education by CADCEP.

The fact we were not consulted with in any way, spoken about in any way in the film, combined with the many survivor complaints that have been pouring in about the movie's "inaccuracy" are why we are not going to be attending anything to do with this film thank you.  Nor will our members who are "anonymous" about their membership but who heavily dominate this field as professionals now working with helping other survivors.

Unlike Samoly Mam, I have a criminal record that substantiates the validity of my being a victim and survivor.   If not for the fact no one could disprove my claims - there wouldn't be a movement to be talking about because prior to my first stepping out in the national media to tell my story, and why I founded the program and hotline for others - the world didn't even believe sex trafficking was REAL in the first place.  Others had tried in the 60's, 70's and even in 1980 to convince the world this was real - only to be accused of talking about "urban myths".  The fact a victim can call the police today and not be locked up in a psychiatric hospital for "observation" because they're "hallucinating" as was done prior to 1987 in this country was because no one could disprove my story, along with the fact I turned down over one million dollars in book and movie contracts in order to be believed by the general public.

In fact, I went onto a Joan Rivers talk show in 1993 with that million dollars in contracts and tore them up in front of her camera - making the statement that "it was more important that people believe me than to make money off lies like past movies about woman like me have portrayed", bringing with me statements from women like Alex Adams and Sydney Biddle Barrows that the movies about them had been complete fabrications not showing the "darker side" of the sex industry which included sex trafficking.

Your film is inaccurate and misleading and we are not going to support it in any way.  

Jody Williams

PS - where are the male, lesbian, Jewish, Buddhist, and transgender victims in your film that are victims also?

Monday, February 22, 2016

LIES OF THE SEX INDUSTRY - STRIP OR SCREW YOUR WAY TO COLLEGE

Belle Knox has become the "poster child" of the "do porn to pay for college" movement.  However, at no time during any of her interviews did she bring up there are other ways to pay for college besides doing porn, stripping, or actual prostitution.

In fact, Dennis Hof and the strip clubs have now picked up this advertising call saying they will "match your income to pay for college".  Of course leaving off the fact the average length of employment with any one club or brothel is less than four months.  Meaning you would pay for what - an hour of your semester?

I bring you one case in point of alternative measures one can use to pay for college no matter how expensive it is, and no matter how little money you have.  https://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/10/10/1335669/-Germany-offers-free-college-tuition-to-U-S-and-international-students?detail=emailclassic  There are also companies that hire English speaking American's to go to other countries to teach English.  They pay for all of your travel expenses, along with your living expenses so that you can pocket your income even.

This one company we've worked with is a reputable company where I've personally stayed in touch with their employees as they've gone to other countries, done the tutoring gig, got to see the country, and have returned safely to America with no problems.  If you are not working, or on disability, they pay your tuition for the school to teach you how to teach English - thus meaning everything can be paid for.

Meaning that right now, you can be put onto a track where in six months you will be certified to teach English in another country of your choice, including a country like Germany.  You will then further have your travel and lodging expenses paid to travel to this other country of your choice - some of which will also offer you free college.  Even medical school by the way.

Our program, www.sexworkersanonymous.com has had members who have gone to medical school in other countries, then returned here to become doctors.  There are special classifications where you can start doing medical work here in the USA right away, or tests you can take to get the American license to practice medicine.

We have been hearing all the marketing lies of the sex industry no different than the tobacco industry tried to push on us that "tobacco was not addictive" and "tobacco doesn't cause cancer", etc.  Until the truth came out about how many chemicals they were putting in the tobacco to make it more addictive, and harmful, to the consumer.  Lies which include "I can't get a job because of my criminal record" and "I can't go to college because it's too expensive".  There are also ways to earn up to 60 college credits by examination - without attending one class - right here in the USA.  Some colleges like MIT are even offering a full course of classes for free online which can earn you a degree depending on what you want to study.  While you can't get a medical degree free online in America - there are ways to get other types in subjects such as math, electronics, science, etc.    There are even programming classes one can take for free online and we have one member I'm aware of who is making $75 an hour working from home doing computer programming.  This is a woman who never went past the 8th grade in school because she was sold at a young age.

Have you ever tried talking to an addict or alcoholic about why they drink and/or use?  It's a whole long list of excuses.  The same can go for someone in the sex industry.  Those excuses include "I have a criminal record and can't get a job" and "college is so expensive I don't know how else I'd pay for it".  Our program has helped many a member with a criminal record not only find work, but even start-up capital to open up their own business.  There is a foundation in NY to name one that gives money to felons to open up their own company because they found they often make the best business entrepreneurs.   I've also seen quite a few different ways to pay for college without resorting to the sex industry or even leaving the country.   We have worked with one major corporation that was providing our new members with housing, jobs, medical insurance and also tuition assistance until they came under new ownership a few years ago down in Florida.

I don't publish these lists because they aren't exactly great advertising for the company "hey we hire ex-hookers" or "we hire ex-porn performers" doesn't sell family vacations that easily.  I also don't publish them because I dig them out on my own time.  I go out and I talk to employers and I make arrangements to get our members hired so why would I publish that list for another nonprofit or NGO to come in and make it appear they made this hook-up?  Besides, I know fairly well that when we place an employee with a company that person is truly desiring to never return to sex work again.  Not that they will hire them on our word, and then they find that person turning tricks in the back stock room or south parking lot.  They know we're placing people with them who are truly serious about never returning to sex work - and they do this to assist survivors with being able to move on to new lives.

Which by the way I've found it quite interesting that some companies who are loudly proclaiming they're offering scholarships aren't exactly being very honest.  I've been checking out some of these press releases about "we're offering scholarships to trafficking victims" and it seems some have a few conditions.  One for example said they would only pay for the scholarship IF the student was to go to school on-campus - not in the online course work.  Not considering most survivors I'm aware of have severe PTSD in recovery, and most want to attend school from home, also because of things like child care issues, and lack of a car, or disability, I found it interesting they would only pay for the scholarship if the student were to physically attend classes on campus.   Now I don't know about you - but I don't know of many survivors who are living in that small southern town that this one school was in offering the scholarship.  If you ask me - they wanted an ex-hooker on their campus to entice male students to attend.  That's just my perception of the offer when I started investigating further.

I say that because it's well known that many companies will advertise they will work with felons with records so they can abuse them.  Take a look at Walmart or McDonald's for example.  They are quite open they will hire anyone with a felony record.  However, they also shave off hours off your time card, and they have also forced workers to work "off the clock" to save said job.  They are known for also keeping employees part-time so as not to pay benefits.  Who else would put up with this but felons who can't get work elsewhere?  So I don't consider all offers to "survivors" as altruistic until I've investigated further.

I mean I know a lot of men who will offer a woman "free rent" but it's not so free if you know what I mean.  That's what happened to the original "Destiny House" in Las Vegas that was supposed to have opened with Annie Lobert.  Seems an elderly gentlemen had offered to donate a house to them on the provision he had a "hands on" relationship with the women in residence.  Once he was told that wasn't cool - he pulled back the house offer.  This put them back at square one to have to find another house.  I give them credit for not giving in to that pressure.

I've spoken to another company who has been marketing the message loudly they offer scholarships to trafficking victims if they would hire someone who still has their porn online.   The modern trafficker is obtaining porn as soon as possible in the relationship to block the person from leaving the industry.  I point you to Christy Mack who after a horribly violent attack said she would "not be leaving the porn industry".  I pointed out "could she?"  I in fact started contacting large companies who are offering scholarships to trafficking survivors and asked them flat out "would you hire Christy Mack?"  I got a lot of hmming and hawing - so the answer was clearly "no".

I have found more women are blocked from employment by porn online than a criminal record.  Now if we had more REAL survivors, and men and women in recovery from sex work, being allowed to speak within the press, rather than than fake survivors, or paid shills, then OUR voices would be heard more.  I point to the so called "survivor board" that was pushed through mostly by Polaris.  https://endslaveryandtrafficking.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/House-Sign-On-Letter-FINAL-February-19-2015_Judiciary_0.pdf

Our program has over 190,000 members in it's active database at this moment.  Our blog has over 50,000 subscribers on an average day, with about 200 views per day hitting just the blogs.  We have been operating since 1987.   Sex Workers Anonymous has chapters in the USA, Canada, Costa Rico, Russia, Australia, New Zealand, Amsterdam, France, England, and a chapter in the process of forming in Mexico once we finish the Spanish translation of our "Recovery Guide".

Meaning we are the world's oldest and largest group of survivors.  Our hotline I've answered since 1987 has clocked about 500,000 calls from victims directly.  I've worked with those transitioning out of sex work since 1984 overall all over this country, and other countries, both male, female and transgender.  If you check clips I have up at www.hightechmadam.com which can be verified are real through the newspapers themselves - you'll see by the dates I was not only the first person in this country to put together a "safe house" for trafficking victims in Los Angeles in 1984, but I was also the first person to launch a hotline for adult victims to call for help AND I was the first person to approach our legal system asking that they consider some of us as "victims" needing help, not criminals, and the first person speaking out the mental health field needed to accept our reality in order to provide us with proper treatment, i.e., making me the founder of this very modern trafficking movement itself.

In other words, I am like the Bill Wilson of the alcoholism movement for the subject of trafficking.  However, I don't know anyone on this advisory board - nor have we been consulted in any way about this board.  Frankly, I think this creates an "unfair competition" in this field and I am speaking with attorney's and law professors now about pursuing legal action about it.

So it kind of reminds me of when those who wanted to open drug treatment centers above Jimmy Kinnon's objections (the founder of Narcotics Anonymous) that they "didn't work" - some people went in and illegally voted him off the board of NA and then went and did what they wanted.  From what I've seen of these drug programs' success rate - Jimmy wasn't wrong either.   I mean I ask you what "survivor advisory board" is it that (1) doesn't have the founder of the movement that made them possible, and (2) hasn't asked for anyone on the oldest, and largest, program of survivors to be a part of it?  It's like an advisory board on alcoholism that doesn't acknowledge Bill Wilson, nor has one member of AA on it.

It might be why we're not hearing about real solutions and truths to dispel the myths coming out of them.  http://abcnews.go.com/Lifestyle/college-students-strip-pay-tuition-costs/story?id=23782754

I would also like to point out that ABC is now plugging "strip to pay for college" quite loudly, among other large major media outlets, while groups like ours with our voices saying "there are other ways" and also pointing out that very few women are succeeding in meeting the goals offered by the clubs and brothels (such as most don't work for the club long enough to make any substantial headway in paying for tuition) are being silenced.  In fact, the news about "free college in Germany" came from a tiny newsletter that we get.  This means the media has become a "marketer" of propaganda for the sex industry since the passing of the Telecommunications Act of 1995.

This very movement itself would not be possible if not that from 1987 to 1995 - I was able to produce a weekly show with "recovery stories" (remember we didn't coin the term "trafficking" until the year 2000) which aired on public access in Los Angeles for free. Interns would do the filming, sound, editing, etc. for us in return for resume credit.  Then we would duplicate this tape, and send it on to other cities like San Francisco, New York, Miami, Chicago, etc.   Those stations we sent the tapes to were required to air them as part of their community service.  So the Trafficking Act of 2000 would not have happened if not for THIRTEEN YEARS of our stories going out over air waves that we're now finding our voices blocked from.

I say that because also before this Act passed - media was required to air "opposing viewpoints" meaning when Joe Conforte, the owner of the Mustang Ranch legal brothel, went on TV - he would not do so without a counter or opposing view also airing.  I found a tape by the way of a show I did debating him (and winning as brothels were not made legal in California that year) in an archive that should be digitized and online in a few more weeks.

This is what Noam Chomsky refers to as "manufacturing consent" right in front of your eyes. Silencing your opposers does not mean you don't have opposition.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

SALLY'S FUND RASIER

Ever since the news hit that Samoly Mam had lied about being a survivor of sex trafficking, and had amassed a fortune in donations, awards, etc., before being exposed - this is when I first started getting the fake "Nigerian" calls for help.  Instead of being asked to help someone smuggle "millions out of their country" and then asking for my bank account number - this person was claiming to be "rescuing sex trafficking victims".   

When the film "Taken" was made based on one man's story - more people started seeing the financial potential in these stories.  Yes later he was exposed as a fraud and arrested - but a lot of people still aren't aware his story was not true either.  No you can't run around other countries shooting up traffickers and then come back to the states and be called a "hero".  

Then came "8 Minutes".  Kevin Brown and Greg Reese were going all over California holding fund raisers for their so called "rescue" they were pretending was real operating here in California.  I know because one of his assistants called me asking if I would "send a prostitute to their hotel room so they could stage an intervention".  I said "you want me to send you over a traumatized just rescued woman who just left being kept captive by a pimp to a hotel room where this ex-cop can then offer to take her off to some ranch in NM and she can stay there for a year to get treatment?"  I'm thinking to myself "what kind of con is this guy running?" and "why on earth would I do that to a woman in that type of condition?" as well as WHO would ASK such a thing?  So I said "I would like to see this ranch you're claiming you're "rehabilitating women at".  Of course I never heard from him again until I saw the show on TV.  

Relativity Media by the way is being sued by investors who invested in the series based on the news clips and thinking it was real just as investors invested in the idea of Heidi Fleiss opening a "male to female" brothel in Nevada while they were airing "Gigolo's" which was also exposed as being "actors" and not a "reality" show.  So actually "8 Minutes" was the third time I'd seen Relativity Media conning investors not only with the idea of a "reality show" which was actually staged, but also in connection with investing on the outside of the show as well.

Another fund raiser came with "Kamylla" claiming she had been "promised help" on one hand while admitting the show was staged.  Well which is it?  If the show was "for real" then she would have been given help as they claimed to be doing.  If it was staged, then why would she then think they could help her in reality?  But the news spread that Kamylla had been handed $10,000.

The cherry on the sundae came when Heather, the woman who shot Neal Falls, was handed $17,000.  Only to then disappear pretty much. 

Now the feeding frenzy is on.  Latesha Clay, a 15 year old with two small children, was tried as an adult without one word from this media, or online campaigns, to help her.  Amber Batts was left to lose her marriage, home, and children, for trying to screen clients and keep sex workers safe in Alaska.  No fund raisers for her.   But the Cupcake Girls and the three madams are busy busy busy raising money money money now - and everyone wants in.  

That's why "Sally" contacted after supposedly the Cupcake Girls turned her down for a fund raiser.  She then tried to talk me into hosting her a fund raiser.  I said "for what?"  She said "to get me out of sex work".  I replied I didn't need a fund raiser to get her out of sex work as we do it all the time, and do it without holding fund raisers.  Why?  Because the whole point is to teach them how to take care of themselves.  Me handing them money, a "john" handing them money, donors handing them money - are not teaching them to be financially self-reliant.  Nor is there any difference between marketing someone as a pimp vs. marketing them for a fund raiser - marketing is marketing.  What we do is show people how to become financially independent no matter their situation or limitations if that's what they want.  

So I offered to do this for her - connect her to our local Vegas members and show her how to get out of sex work.  Turns out that isn't what she wanted.  So she bashed us, and kept going until she found Stepping Stones.  BTW - Stepping Stones takes prostitutes off the streets and has them make handmade journals that they sell online.  How does this teach them how to make a decent living for themselves?  Not a clue.  But then again many of our members are business owners, artists, writers, doctors, lawyers, managers, brokers, realtors, politicians, reporters, and well financially independent. 

I wrote to Leroy when I saw the fund raiser letting him know of my experience with Sally.  He did not ask for the proof and has continued on for weeks asking donors for money.  I'm sorry - but if I was going to ask anyone for money for an attorney, or to help her out - it would be Latesha Clay who was tried as an adult in Michigan and clearly needs a better attorney.  Which by the way we were told yesterday we did secure.  I thought you might like to see the email I just sent Leroy about Sally.  While we will defend sex workers and trafficking victims confidentiality aggressively, and have, I report Nigerian con artists, and attack anyone who is harming supporters of those who truly do want to help real sex workers and real victims to find a new life.  They deserve honesty and protection also.  

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: LEAVING THE LIFE <msjodywilliams@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, Feb 20, 2016 at 3:20 PM
Subject: SALLY
To: Leroy Lamar <leroy@serenityssteps.org>


Dear Mr. Lamar:

I've received a telephone call from you so I'm sure you received my email about Sally Anne informing you of my experiences with her, and the fact I have the calls and texts recorded to back up my statements about her being a complete fraud with respect to the basis of this fund raiser.  It was my refusal to help her after I realized what she was as to why she then approached your group.  

First, she claims to "not be able to get an ID card".  We come across this problem FREQUENTLY.  Especially with our members who were sold as children so many of them don't even know their legal name sometimes.  I know for a fact Sally is residing in Las Vegas because she called me pressuring me for a physical meeting on the first phone call which real survivors by the way NEVER do.  

In Nevada especially we get a lot of survivors who for one reason or another can't get access to a birth certificate.  To obtain an ID card - the DMV there will take things like school records, shot records which are maintained at the Health Dept., and therefore can't be "lost" by the person in question, health insurance papers, utility bills, jail slips one gets when released, bailbond receipts, etc.  Also, she claims to have come to this country from India - meaning there's a record of her entering the country kept in NY's Immigration where she says this was her port of entry.   

When she started in with her ID issue - I told her I would personally pick her up, get her paperwork, and then take her to DMV and walk her through the process with a supervisor I've done this with many times, even offering to pay for the ID itself for her.   Not only did she block me at every turn from getting any of these alternative sources of paperwork when asked, but she kept INSISTING that I make her up a phony ID card illegally to create her a fake ID which of course I refused to do.

I've been placing men and women in jobs in Nevada since 1996 when I relocated there.  We have many members who are working at jobs in that town, that are supervisors, that work in human resources, and some who even own their own companies.   I know of jobs that pay cash daily for example where the supervisor literally lived about three buildings down from where she claimed to live.  This supervisor picks up our SWA members for work each day, and then drives them back home.  He's even helped pay for tuition for some of the employees who do well at the job - and done this without any form of sexual harassment.   Not one of our SWA members he's hired for this job has he asked for one look at their ID cards if they didn't want to show it, nor has he asked for their record information.  At the end of the day, he pays them in cash in full and they're working jobs paying enough to pay for their apartments, car lease, etc.  I've even gone down sometimes to this job when I've needed to pick up some quick cash.  

One of the jobs I talked to her about STARTED at $25 an hour doing time share presentations.  Now if she can work the streets supposedly as a prostitute - she can learn a sales pitch.  I say that because we've got about 10 SWA members working there now.  One woman has already paid off her condo mortgage at this job.    The company has a shuttle that picks up steps from where she says she lives and drops off right by them as they're right behind the MGM casino.  

"Sally" refused to even DISCUSS these jobs with me let alone consider them.

As for attorney's, we have three attorney's who have been donating their time which we use even if they weren't donating because they're the only attorney's who (1) aren't afraid to stand up to the prosecutor, (2) don't insist on sexual favors out of prostitutes.  

Having worked with the legal system and the local attorney's in Nevada also since the 1990's - I can assure you most attorney's are working for the state - not the prostitute.  Many won't even defend a prostitute, and others won't file charges when appropriate against corrupt judges.  If you think Nevada, with all the strip clubs and legal brothels, doesn't have attorney's and judges that swing things their way routinely - think again.  Most attorney's won't go up against a bad judge either -  they'll just let the judge violate their own rules.   In Vegas especially, it's the "wild wild west".  I've seen women locked up when they have not committed a crime, and they're not even charge.  Clark County Detention does not bat an eye about holding prostitutes up to 72 hours without charges in fact - not even listing them on the inmate registry. 

All but three attorney's I'm aware of in Vegas that will work with prostitutes at all are on drugs and insist upon sexual favors with them.  I've even had criminal lawyers I've been talking to on behalf of these women start hitting on me for sexual favors and I'm 54, fat, and walk with a cane since my stroke!   I can also show you at least three judges I've had to file complaints against in Nevada for their abuse of the prostitutes in their court, about five attorney's, and six police officers.  

Which is one of the reasons why we stick with these three attorney's to assist our members even if we did pay them cash.  Which we don't pay them because if an attorney receives so much as $1.00 from someone who is receiving that money from illegal sex work - he could wind up charged with "pimping" and disbarred.  THAT'S why our attorney's work on a donation basis with sex workers - to avoid the auditing that the system throws at them otherwise to try and get them disbarred.

I bring this up because supposedly your fund raiser is about "raising money for attorney's fees".  Okay you raise the money.  What do you know about the attorney she's going to use?  Do you know how he treats other prostitutes?  Do you know what his record is in court?  Has he taken bribes to throw cases, or refused to properly defend a prostitute because he wanted to cover his own ass?   Fund raiser or not - if an active prostitute has donated to your fund raiser and then you give him that money - that still makes him legally a "pimp" and your group then an "accessory".  

Now, I know Sally is a liar so I'm sure she's made up some wonderful stories.  As to another woman I know you're working with who is also telling you stories about us as well.  Because another woman in Atlanta came to us with the same song and dance also about "needing money because she couldn't find a job because of her record".   Only the minute we started telling her about jobs she could work at there in Atlanta with a record - was the minute she stormed off and then to cover her tracks started telling the stories about us we've heard repeated in connection with her latching onto your program for help.  

That's why I offered to pay you the tapes so you could verify for yourself everything I'm telling you about Sally getting you to engage in a fraudulent fund raiser on her behalf as you've started.   You know Leroy, if a group that's been working with victims in Vegas since 1996 rejects helping someone with a fund raiser as she's asking for - it might be for good reason which is why reputable agencies often protect each other by sharing information.

Not on survivors, but on con artists.  Sally is not a trafficking victim for one thing.  But I also don't believe she's a sex worker either.  I checked that out "on the streets" including her story about being "almost arrested at the Cosmopolitan" and it's completely bogus.   I spoke to security there I have a relationship with and her incident never happened for one.  For another, other working girls out there where she claims to work don't know her either.  

She's a con artist period.  Now I have not had you ask to see any of this but I see the fund raiser is still active.  Therefore, I've printed out her social media, your sites, and I'm turning them over to the authorities for further investigation.  


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

ARE WE PUTTING KIDS INTO THE FIRE?

Dear Dennis:

I'm writing in response to your article - http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865647331/Proposed-Utah-law-would-treat-child-prostitutes-as-victims-not-criminals.html?pg=all     To the novice – “not charging a juvenile as a criminal” sounds like a great thing.  But this is because the people making these laws haven’t really taken the time to understand the issue completely, nor the effects of their laws in the “real world”.  You would have thought we learned from the Mann Act of 1910 to do this but I guess not STILL.  The Mann Act was designed to do something about Asian women who were being brought over here to work at massage parlors, and then moved every few weeks so they didn’t form attachments with anyone who would “rescue” them. 

Instead of taking the time to understand how trafficking really worked, and trying to use this law to do something about the problem – by the 1960’s the only two people who had been charged under the Mann Act were two black men for marrying white women and then working across state lines so they took their wives with them.  In other words, it was used to mask racism. 

Let me tell you my viewpoint on the issue – I’m the person who started the movement to have this issue recognized in the 1980’s.  Yep – I’m the founder of this very trafficking movement we’re talking about here.  I’m saying that because in the 1970’s, I was seeing raids on brothels, strip clubs, massage parlors, etc., as well as sweeps of corners like Sunset Blvd., where every woman in sight was being loaded onto buses and charged as criminals.    Then when those who were being forced to be there would state so – they’d be laughed at with “oh yeah they all say they’re innocent”. 

Many people had tried to tell the public this was real to no avail.  Elvis Presley believe it or not in a 1965 film “Harem Holiday” tried to show sex trafficking.  Bruce Lee tried to show sex and human trafficking in “Enter the Dragon” and it also got no register.   Linda Lovelace tried to tell the public she’d been forced to film “Deep Throat” while her pimp/husband was pointing a gun at her off camera – only to have the public accuse her of being “jealous”  of “being dumped for a younger model” in Marilyn Chambers.   I would see talk show audiences literally “boo” Linda and articles in porn publications attacking her vehemently.

We had no where to run.  If we tried to go to a drug treatment program, homeless shelter, domestic violence shelter, etc., we were literally denied.  There was even a proposition being pushed in 1986 wanting to quarantine us on an island with “junkies and homosexuals” without regard for whether we were forced to continue prostituting while HIV positive. 

I had opened the first safe house for adults myself because of this only to find myself arrested in 1984 and accused of “running a brothel” simply because I had a woman on probation for prostitution sleeping in a warehouse I’d set up to protect victims.  THAT’S when I said “enough” and embarked upon a media campaign where we bombarded the public with survivors telling their stories about this being real until we saw the Trafficking Act of 2000 pass.

Our hope was to see prostitution decriminalized across the board.  Why?  Because as long as we’re criminals we’re unable to not only defend ourselves probably, but this hinders prosecution of the real criminals.  How?  I once rescued a girlfriend of mine out of an auto body shop where I found her chained to a fridge needing 51 stitches.   We went to the police who then threw us out of their office instead of going for the search warrant we’d asked for.  When I was asking why he was throwing us out he said “because I can’t get a warrant based on the word of  whore”.   

His explanation was that as a “criminal” we had no “credibility” and thus our word was “worthless in court”.  That the law viewed any harm one to us as done “during the commission of a crime” and thus her 51 stab wounds were “her fault” or “the price of doing business”.  Because of this eviction out of his office, it was another two years before they caught  the two cousins that was the Hillside Strangler right at the address we’d given and more women were murdered because they didn’t get a warrant on them that day we were there. 

While prostitution is a crime – every time a victim calls the National Trafficking Hotline she’s violating her 5th amendment right not to incriminate herself.  Which is why we set up a special hotline in 1987 answered by a minister so that every caller is granted confidentiality they’re not currently granted nationally.  In fact, every word out of a victim’s mouth against those who are trafficking her, or him, or raping, robbing, or even about a murder, is a form of self-incrimination.  Meaning it’s also almost impossible to get other witnesses to come forward, to get evidence provided, or even to get someone to testify because they are also putting themselves at risk of being criminally prosecuted. 

So rather than just decriminalize prostitution so we can start going after the bad guys across the board without fear or hesitation – the country is moving towards not charging juveniles as criminals for prostitution.   Sounds good but here’s the realities about that.  Let’s start with Latesha Clay in Michigan.  This 15 year old mother of two small children was working as a prostitute while robbing customers with a gun.  http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2016/01/girl_15_sent_to_prison_for_lur.html    To criminally charge her – the court charged her as an adult.  However, they forgot that adults are allowed to attend our www.sexworkersanonymous.com meetings as an “alternative to incarceration” because she is still legally a juvenile.   So she’s now sitting in a prison charged as an adult.

Another reality is that most states will only do mandatory HIV testing on prostitutes once charged or found guilty of prostitution.  In Los Angeles, their statistics show no juveniles arrested for prostitution which sounds good until you realize this also mens none of those juveniles have been tested yet either.   Charlie Sheen has just admitted to frequently prostitutes while also concealing he was HIV positive.  

I sincerely doubt he was checking valid ID’s during these games meaning he might have exposed at least one or two juveniles.  Various states, Tijuana, Korea and China have admitted they’re seeing another HIV epidemic.   So we from a public health standpoint don’t know if these juveniles are HIV positive.   A lack of numbers by the way also means a lack of funding, programs, or even urgency.   If we’re not testing these girls how do we know if we have a serious problem or not requiring more aggressive outreach? 

Also, I hate to say this but what leverage do we have to force them to seek some kind of treatment?   With adults, to avoid incarceration, they go through our program.   If they don’t comply, they’re put into jail.  This is very strong motivation for some people – including myself.  If not for the threat of incarceration hanging over my head – I doubt very much I would have quit work that had made me $250,000 in less than a year to go and hostess at a coffee shop as was my first “square” job when I was put on probation myself. 

Remember, there’s an assumption here that ALL of these girls are being pimped and that’s just not the case.  I entered into the sex industry while a teen and no pimp “turned me out” into the “game” as they called it back then.  I asked the people I knew doing this if they’d “teach me the ropes” when I was seeing their Rolls Royce’s and their mansion next to Michael Jackson’s.  

Also, there hasn’t even been an “alternative” put in place yet.  Again, LAPD hasn’t arrested one juvenile for 2015.  Okay what DID they do with them?  I’m reading there is an overcrowding problem at the Youth Welcome Center where the overcrowding is so bad pimps crawling all over this center so much they’re discussing locking the kids inside to keep them safe.  http://www.latimes.com/local/california/la-me-welcome-center-20150622-story.html   There’s only about 900 foster parents with about 4,000 kids needing fosters right now.  Children of the Night only has about 14 beds that I’m aware of which is why I’m reading many of these girls don’t have anywhere they can go for help.  Many can’t go home because they’re parents, foster parents, or guardians were the ones trafficking them.   I’m not saying jail is perfect for some teens – but for some it might be the only way to escape a home where they’re being trafficked.   I say that because most of our members have reported the ones who were pushing them into sex work as teens wasn’t a pimp – but their parent, guardian, or even social worker, teacher or coach. 

I appreciate what many states are doing in not wanting to charge these kids as criminals.  However, I think we have a lot more things to consider before turning this into throwing these kids from the frying pan into the fire.  Thanks for your attention to this letter. 

Jody Williams
(818) 6463296 Telephone







Thursday, February 18, 2016

SEX WORKERS AND RAPE

http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/crime/suspected-serial-rapist-charged-in-seattle-rape-case/  It was awesome to read that a sex worker was able to have her voice heard and the Seattle police went after this guy and got him.  Kudos Seattle.

However, one of the reasons our hotline was born was because not every sex worker CAN call the police for one thing everywhere yet and get that kind of help.  The other was because sometimes the one harming us IS the police.  You want to help fight sex trafficking and get these men and women out of sex work?  How about working on why we can't turn to the police for help everywhere yet in this country and feel safe doing so?   http://www.dailynews.com/general-news/20160218/2-lapd-officers-plead-not-guilty-to-sexually-assaulting-4-women

If you need help to leave the sex industry for any reason - you can get help at www.sexworkersanonymous.com  If someone is raping you, pimping you, or otherwise dangerous - please let us know so we can post the information at www.pimpalert.com  

Thank you.



PORN PROTEST

Dear Susan:

I read your article today about the protests.  http://www.dailynews.com/social-affairs/20160217/porn-performers-set-to-protest-thursday-vote-requiring-condoms-eyewear-on-film-sets?obref=obinsite  Please allow me to introduce myself.  My name is Jody Williams and I’m the founder of Sex Workers Anonymous.  We used to be Prostitutes Anonymous – but we changed our name in 1995 because of the way the internet changed the industry.

We formed our program in 1987 during the height of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and also this was the launch of the modern day sex trafficking movement.  I had gone to our then Mayor Tom Bradley, Sheriff Block, and Chief Gates, about the way that all things combined within the sex industry was going to take a very special type of outreach and cooperation if they wanted to slow down the raging spread of this virus.   They agreed to put down everyone’s usual “arms” and create a board to work together to solve the issues sooner than passing laws could have done.  This board had someone from every office from the police, prosecutor, health dept., mental health, HUD, social services, a judge, etc.  Also I was on the board representing both the sex industry and what is now called a “trafficking victim” (we didn’t have that term coined until the Trafficking Act of 2000” passed).

I had explained to them that they weren’t going to get sex workers to use condoms if they kept calling them “evidence of prostitution” to arrest them, number one.  Number two, you weren’t going to get someone who was HIV positive off the stroll if they had a pimp forcing them to be out there.  Thus we had to not only help the sex workers who back then were having to come up with $10,000 a month for medications through sex work just to stay alive to get their medication other ways – but also we had to find a way to extract them from the pimp.  We had set up a special testing site for sex workers where we could ask if they wanted help to leave their pimp for this reason.  If the answer was yes – then we’d take them out a back door while throwing the pimp out the front.

Working together – we were able to bring what was an 80 percent infection rate in sex workers within one year down to less than six percent.  That was lower than that of non-sex workers.  Feeling cocky – we then approached the porn industry.  This is when we asked them to start showing that condoms could be sexy and fun and to show stars using them thinking this would encourage the “johns” to do the same because they always mimicked what they saw in adult films.  The industry cooperated as you know – but then we had a revolt of the viewers.  This created an explosion of “amateur” porn to come out in response to the demand.

Now back then that was one thing.  The industry was pretty geographical and most performers didn’t move out of whatever part of town they’re in.   So the HIV/AIDS spike we saw was easy to catch.  However, I believe that with the way the sex industry is today, what with the internet, and in light of the fact AIM no longer exists – I believe something like these laws being passed would be disastrous.  Especially since we’re in the middle of an unreported epidemic now as we speak.  I say that because I’ve been answering this hotline since 1987 and I’m getting more calls now then I did back then from sex workers who are now HIV positive.    We know Charlie Sheen was covering up a lot, but it’s been confirmed in Tijuana, and other spots about the USA.  The last thing we want to do is to stir up another amateur explosion at a time when most young sex workers don’t even know what HIV nor do they care.

I started getting so many calls about HIV out here in Los Angeles back when Charlie was trying to keep it silent – that I relocated back out here from Vegas last year.  I thought the town would value my experience in this area having worked at ground zero so successfully back in the 1980’s.   Instead I found the AHF wouldn’t even return my phone calls!

Well let me tell you this – I’ve been working as a paralegal since I retired from sex work in 1985 and I fail to see how any film made on a porn set is any different than a sex scene filmed on a MGM set or Universal or any other film studio.  So I looked at the manual for SAG and found it had not been updated in over TEN YEARS!  If anything – I find their manual to be MORE unsafe for MORE actors than what the porn industry has adopted.  To be honest, I think to ask this would create an “unfair trade advantage” to major studios to start making more movies with sex scenes in them which I’ve already seen start!  I have been seeing films coming off SAG sets more raunchy than some porns lately!  Which means if they change this safety manual – I don’t understand why it doesn’t apply to any sex scene in any film hence why not the SAG Health & Safety Manual?

Frankly, I’m finding that there is WAY more HIV going around right now in these Asian massage parlors and if the AHF is sooo concerned about this then I’d like to see an outreach campaign started to address this – rather than a porn performer who gets tested regularly and frankly has very little sex compared to these women.   These women are having 10 to 15 unprotected contacts a day, they’re not being tested, and they’re not even seeing doctors except one that keeps things “off the records” so the “johns” wives and employers don’t find out.   Plus there is already a confirmed epidemic in both China and Korea – where these women are coming over from.   Especially when they’re being forced many of them to work there.

So I kept asking the AHF to speak to me about how we could target this community who is spreading way more HIV than the porn industry is – only to be ignored.   Remembering the Ryan White Foundation remembered my work from the 1980’s I wrote them about this.  Their response was to deny the AHF their 3.8 million dollar grant this year.  Now did that stop the AHF?   Nope.

Meaning I don’t think this has anything to do with HIV and the public safety.   If it was – he’d be picking up the phone when someone who brought the rates down so dramatically in the sex industry in the 1980’s called him on the phone!

I’ve written to the Free Speech Coalition and I’ve offered to help them research a lawsuit against the people doing this and the SAG – because first of all I don’t see why there should be two Health & Safety Manuals.  I mean when did we really define the line between “porn” and “ a sex scene” in a film?  I’ve seen just as sexual of scenes in Universal Films as I have a Vivid one.  Not to mention the fight scenes where blood is spilled!

If you’d like to talk more about this – I can be reached at (818) 6463296.  Thanks!

Jody Williams

www.sexworkersanonymous.com





CHILD TRAFFICKING IN ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA

http://mynewsla.com/orange-county/2016/02/15/pair-accused-of-human-trafficking-arrested-in-anaheim-hotel/

I'm writing about the above article.  It sounds like a "prostitution" arrest NOT a "human trafficking" arrest.  There is a difference.  Was this the reporter not knowing the difference, or was the person charged this way?  

I can't find an email for the author Debbie directly, so could you please forward this to her?  I'm curious why the three females was taken to the Salvation Army shelter which is not specifically set up for victims who have been prostituted, instead of Children of the Night, who is.  Children of the Night is specifically set up with specially trained therapists, other survivors they can talk to, and also security in case this pimp/trafficker decides to intimidate the women because they are a witness.  

Which is very common.  The reason why I'm asking if this was a "pimping" case vs. "human trafficking" is this.  If this was some street pimp they have in custody - great.  Problem solved.  

However, if this was a "human trafficking" case, that means that there are other people probably still at large.  Other people on the outside who might be coming after these three victims to try and threaten and intimidate them, or worse, so they don't testify against anyone else in the operation.  

Since I do not know of any Salvation Army that has security in place for this kind of thing - again why I'm wondering why these victims was taken to a Salvation Army instead of a program like Children of the Night.  It's not like they wouldn't come out and get these women.    

I don't have an email for who made such a decision as to take these women to a Salvation Army instead of a program that is specifically designed for this type of victim whereas the Salvation Army is generally designed for homeless people, drug addicts and sexual predators.  

I mean you are aware the Salvation Army is the only program I'm aware of that is licensed to house sexual offenders after they get released from jail right?  So I'm reading that these young victims were taken to a program that probably has no security, no specially trained therapists, no other survivors for them to speak to, and possibly could have sexual offenders on the premises and no one sees anything wrong with this or at least is asking any questions about it?

Can you help me track down the email address for the person who made this decision please to send these victims there instead of a program like Children of the Night?  I'm not like their advocate or anything, and I don't work for them, I'm just pointing out that there is a program specifically set up for this type of victim they weren't sent to instead of being sent to a Salvation Army.  So I am curious if anyone double checked to see if this was one where the sexual offenders are housed in the area.

Thank you for your assistance in this matter because I would like to know if these women were put into a specialized program, and also if there are sexual predators in this facility, and why things were done this way.   I say that because I've been in field now since the 1980's.  For the last 30 years when I've heard of victims under the age of 19 who have been rescued from this type of situation - they've been sent to Children of the Night NOT a Salvation Army.  So yes I'm curious as to why this was done, and if anyone double-checked to see if there are sexual offenders also housed in this facility.   

Thank you.  
--
Jody Williams
(818) 646-3296 Cell Phone