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Film, Fashion and Samba Infuse DVD Launch in Rio de Janeiro

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April 29th was a magical and beautiful evening in Rio de Janeiro! The DVD launch of A KISS FOR GABRIELA was combined with a celebration of what would have been Gabriela’s 63rd birthday. Held in the Center Maria Teresa de Arte where the DASPU em Exibição is on exhibit until May 23rd, guests watched the film under the clothing line created by artist Paula Vila Nova and pieces from the DASPU archive.  After the film screening, musicians Jorge Som and …

Power to the Putas in Niteroí

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Yesterday sex workers in Niteroí, a city across the bay from Rio de Janeiro, went to the streets to protest the wrongful arrests of their colleagues and demand their right to work. In the beginning of the month, nine sex workers were wrongfully arrested, and two wrongly charged with “maintaining a house of prostitution” and taken to Bangu, a maximum security prison where they suffered human rights abuses before finally being released days later. The building where the sex workers …

In Protest of the Censorship of DASPU’s Facebook Page

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Last week DASPU provoked a reaction from a Brazil’s increasingly conservative and reactionary society for affirming, yet once more, that bodies with and without clothing on the catwalk, in bed, on the street, at work, on stage –  wherever –  are political. The official Facebook page of DASPU Real was taken offline after a photo from the fashion-show performance in which one of the models appeared naked with the sentence, “sex tourism is legal”, written on her body was denounced …

Monica Jones says “come out in force on April 11” (interview with A Kiss for Gabriela)

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Monica Jones is an Arizona based human rights defender who was wrongfully arrested by a rights violating police operation known as Project ROSE. Monica has always fought for the rights of her community, pressuring for gender neutral bathrooms at Phoenix College and vocally opposing SB 1062–a bill that would allow businesses to discriminate against any group including LGBT people for any religious reason–at the Phoenix Capitol building. Yesterday, Monica went to court for her trial supported by organizations in Phoenix, across …

Sex Workers Unite: A History of the Movement from Stonewall to Slutwalk

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Meandering through the chapters of Melinda “Mindy” Chateauvert’s new publication Sex Workers Unite: A History of the Movement from Stonewall to Slutwalk (Beacon Press, 2014) makes us wish for a television network—the Whorestory Channel perhaps—dedicated to documentaries about the myriad of revolutionary acts of resistance she has uncovered. Patrons at Compton’s Cafeteria in San Francisco—many of them sex workers and transgender folk unwinding after the night’s work—fend off a police raid using their high-heeled shoes, plates and anything else they …

A Tribute to Women Activists

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As a tribute to women activists globally and their fights, we are sharing one more of the video extras from the documentary in which the woman who changed activism in Brazil  talks about what it means to be a prostitute activist and fight against the stigma that continues to exist even among activists. YouTube Long live Gabriela’s clarity, courage, intelligence, charisma, elegance and force!

March is for Sex Worker rights!

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March 3rd is International Sex Worker Rights Day. The day has its origins in incredible activism for rights in South Asia. In 2001 over 25,000 sex workers gathered in India for a sex worker festival organized by the Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee (or DMSC), a Calcutta based group whose membership consists of 65,000 sex workers. As a result of this convening and with a desire to acknowledge the collective power of sex workers’ communities, the DMSC proposed that sex workers of all genders …

DAVIDA’s response to President Dilma’s affirmation on Twitter that “Brazil is ready to combat sex tourism”

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This week yet another example of the moral panic sweeping Brazilian politics emerged, sparked by two t-shirts released by ADIDAS for the World Cup that were understood be be offensive due to their sexual content.  Brazilian officials, including the President, made links between the t-shirts and sex tourism and sexual exploitation,  affirming that the t-shirts were promoting both. In the article in Brazilian press, the president of the Brazilian tourist board for example affirmed that, “..we don’t accept sex tourism. Of …

A Remarkable Victory! A conversation with Elya Durisin

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The KISS FOR GABRIELA team wanted to follow up with our friends in Canada to find out more about the impact of the recent court decision that lead to the decriminalization of sex work. Author, advocate and NSWP board member  Elya Durisin agreed to share her thoughts with us. Elya became involved with the sex workers’ movement in Canada when she moved to Toronto, Ontario, in 2006 by joining Maggie’s: Toronto Sex Workers Action project, an organization she continues to be …

Scholarships deadline for the International AIDS Conference

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An update from our friends at the Best Practices Policy Project, posted here with their permission. We are also pleased to confirm that a film clip about Gabriela Leite will be shown at the proposed mini-film festival–Not Your Rescue Project: dispatches from the sex worker health rights revolution on film–in the Sex Worker Networking Zone at the IAC Global Village. Dear Defenders of the Rights of Sex Workers, The Best Practices Policy Project is writing to remind you that the …