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Statement from the Brazilian Network of Prostitutes about censorship and the federal government’s intervention and alteration of the AIDS prevention campaign

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[This statement from The Brazilian Network of Prostitutes is translated from the original Portuguese and a response to yesterday’s re-release of a drastically altered STI and HIV prevention campaign by the Ministry of Health. This is the most recent in a series of events of censorship of materials produced for and by prostitutes in Brazil. Please see our earlier blog post for more background and the original materials produced and responses from specific sex worker NGOs. Click on the language to download PDF versions in English,Portuguese and Espanhol.]

Against the common good and the general happiness of the nation, the government violates the principles of the Constitution and the Unified Health System

June 7, 2013

The prostitute and sanitary reform movements, which brought about the construction of the Unified Health System (SUS – acronym in Portuguese), have common points in their trajectories: processes of dialogue, creation, and action. As health was transformed into an obligation of the state and right for all – orientated by the principles of universality, equality (without prejudice or privileges of any kind), integrality, decentralization and community participation – the prostitute movement is rooted in denouncing inequality, prejudice, discrimination, and affirming the right to work with dignity, respect and citizenship.

With the government’s decision to first veto and then drastically alter the AIDS campaign supposedly constructed in partnership with prostitutes, we see that 30 years later they are using this social group to affirm what they desire, thereby ignoring the achievements of the social movement and violating diverse democratic principles of the SUS.

First, it violates the principle of community participation. The workshop destined to create the campaign, promoted in March by the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department, resulted in materials that highlighted happiness (“I’m happy being a prostitute”), citizenship (“Our biggest dream is that society sees us as citizens”), the fight against violence (“Not accepting people as they are is a form of violence”) and condoms. What did the government do? It ignored all of these elements that have been proven to contribute to prevention and limited itself to incentivizing condom use, as if it was a gesture that is purely objective and mechanic, disassociated from subjectivities, rights and vulnerabilities. It is the “hygienization” of life.

Second, by selecting only a determinate message from among those constructed in the workshop, it rejects the principle of equality by denying prostitutes the right to express their dreams, ideas of citizenship and affirm their identity and social visibility. In this sense, they are no longer recognized as citizens and users of the SUS.

Prevention and health promotion actions based on citizenship frameworks should highlight, and also be part of, another principle of Health which was violated –  integrality.

Moreover, the government’s actions place them in an arrogant position by only permitting prostitutes to appear as victims or vectors, and as such, subjects without a voice. They only have the right to be saved by the State, which is the provider of the only element (“get your condom at the health center”) that will save them from Aids.

The government’s attitude also reveals an attempt to nurture a moral structure of the family at any cost through their cowardly complicity with a discourse that relegates prostitutes and other “inconvenient” segments to the margins of a certain model of society.

By pronouncing themselves against the text, “I’m happy being a prostitute”, in the beginning, the government also demonstrates arrogance by not believing that a prostitute can be happy and fear that we express desires of happiness that go against this model of society.

And the politicians’ desires? What arrangements are behind these movements? Is there a project for happiness? Why can only they be happy? What is the price to be paid by prostitutes? Our bodies, desires and lives are what are paying the prices of political agreements and party negotiations. This is the cost of the censorship and cutting off dialogue.

Here, we’ll stay, happy with our profession and believing that we shouldn’t live with violence and discrimination, and need to be respected for our choices as citizens. We insist that the government assume, with courage, the construction of policies based on constitutional principles for the entire population, independent of sexual orientation, gender identity or profession.

Statements from Prostitute NGOs in Brazil Repudiating the Government’s Decision to Censor the Campaign

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[Translations of statements circulated on June 5th from sex worker organizations in Brazil. See Portuguese here]

Statement repudiating the government’s decision from the Pernambuco Association of Sex Workers – APPS

June 5, 2013

The Pernambuco Association of Sex Workers – APPS, founded on October 17, 2002, publically repudiates the abusive and politically backward attitude of the Minister of Health in his decision to remove the publicity campaign with Brazilian prostitutes who participated in workshops offered by the Ministry itself in March of this year.

The slogan that resulted in the abusive attitude we are positioning ourselves against was the valorization of prostitution as work, an aspect that constitutes one of main fights of the movement today in terms of reducing stigma against us and fundamentally diminishing our vulnerability to HIV and STD infection. Once more, what was supposed to be a conquest for human rights has turned into a violation of those rights: the suspension of the right to affirm prostitution as a dignified and happy profession.  We express our solidarity with all of the respectable professionals in the Ministry of Health who believed in our fight and understood the political importance of valuing our work, and those who were arbitrarily fired, as well as those that left the National STD/HIV/AIDS Department voluntarily.

Sincerely, The APPS Directorate and Nanci Feijó – Vanderliza Rezende- Maria das Graças

Statement repudiating the government’s decision from the Nucleus of Prostitution Studies in Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul

June 5, 2013

The Nucleus of Prostitution Studies, known as NEP and founded in 1989 is a member of the Brazilian Network of Prostitutes and known for its work with sex workers throughout the state of Rio Grande do Sul. As an organized movement of prostitutes, we feel ashamed of the backward, discriminatory, prejudiced and disrespectful attitude of our Minister of Health, Alexandre Padilha, towards the PROSTITUTES OF BRAZIL. The central values of the Brazilian Network of Prostitutes are to assume their professional identity, seek recognition of prostitution, maintain the social movement of prostitutes organized, social equality, liberty of expression, dignity, solidarity and respect of differences. In this way, NEP presents our statement repudiating the decision of the Minister of Health, Alexandre Padilha, to veto the campaign poster for prostitutes that says, “I am happy being a prostitute”.

This veto represents a step backwards in the actions developed with prostitutes and disrespects the production process of the communication and health workshops for sex workers promoted by the Ministry of Health itself. We believe that the social movements, who are the most committed to combating the epidemic in Brazil, have the right to defend an end to prejudice and to simply say, WE ARE HAPPY. The Ministry of Health’s veto of this campaign is a DISGRACE.

No shame in sharing the campaign censored by Brazil’s Minister of Health

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Brazil’s government was once internationally recognized as a leader in terms of supporting model HIV prevention programs and defending sexual rights. However, the events of the past week provide yet another example that the situation in this country has drastically changed.

On June 4th, Brazil’s Minister of Health, Alexandre Padilha, ordered that a poster reading, “I’m happy being a prostitute,” be removed from the Department of STD/AIDS’s website. The poster was one element of a larger campaign entitled Without Shame to Use Condoms launched on International Prostitutes Day (June 2nd). All of the campaign materials were developed by sex workers during a participatory workshop in March of 2013 that was organized and sponsored by the Ministry of Health.  Minister Padilha alleged that he had not approved the material stating that as long as he is Minister that “this type” of material would not be produced by the government.

After the Minister’s initial decision to remove the poster, “I´m happy being a prostitute”, conservative Evangelical groups in Congress mobilized and questioned the campaign, making discriminatory and stigmatory comments and demanding an explanation from the government.  By the end of the day, the head of Brazil’s Department of STD/AIDS, Dirceu Grecco, had been removed from his position, and the Minister had requested that the ENTIRE campaign be taken offline.  The decision negates the rights of prostitutes to be proud of their work, to speak for themselves and to have access to the kind of health information based on citizenship principles that the Brazilian government itself has championed in the past.

The Minister’s decision to bow to political pressure is indicative of a politics of fear that is becoming pervasive in Brazil. The current government is afraid of losing votes from some radical evangelical groups which have gained significant political influence. The most egregious example of this trend is the ascendancy of Pastor Marco Feliciano who was appointed in March 2013 to the Congressional Human Rights Commission. Feliciano led the charge to condemn the Without Shame to Use Condoms campaign, and, shared via Twitter that the Minister had even called him to apologize for the events.

Padilha’s decision to cancel the Without Shame to Use Condoms campaign is the third time that the government has censored vital health information materials. In early 2012, Padilha censored a campaign designed for Carnaval that featured gay youth –one of the groups where HIV/AIDS has most increased in Brazil–and in March of 2013, the government cancelled the distribution of an AIDS prevention kit for adolescents that mentioned homosexuality, drugs, and pregnancy.

Unfortunately international coverage has trivialized what should have been portrayed as an important story about political trends and much reportage has repeated the hype about feared “increases” in prostitution and “sexual exploitation” at the upcoming 2014 World Cup. Rather than focusing on the human rights violations that this censorship represents, and its connection to previous censorship and the conservative turn in Brazilian politics that is silencing the voices of prostitutes, much of the international media has fallen back on tropes based on moral panics about large sports events and “sex tourism” .

In protest of the recent events,  we are sharing the entire campaign here as a way to fight censorship, celebrate International Prostitutes Day and affirm that prostitution is a respectable profession and sexual right in which women have the right to be happy and deserve the full rights as citizens as any other.  The campaign draws on visual elements–such as the anime figure “Maria Sem Vergonha” (Maria Without Shame)–created for an earlier campaign also developed by the Ministry of Health in partnership with the Brazilian Prostitutes Network.  The original Maria Without Shame campaign was also relaunched on June 2nd (the adhesives are below) and is symbolic of the government’s previously celebrated  solidarity and human rights based approach to HIV and STI prevention with sex workers.

See here the responses of The Brazilian Network of Prostitutes here and sex worker NGOs in Brazil here.

Sou feliz sendo prostituta

“I’m happy being a prostitute”

 

“Love, I can’t be without condoms”.

Cidadania Campanha DSTAIDS

“Our biggest dream is that society sees us as citizens”.

Violenca_Campanha DSTAIDS

“Not accepting people the way they are is a form of violence”

Toda dia prevencao_Campanha DSTAIDS

“Everyday we need to do AIDS education and prevention.”

Sem vergonha lutar pelos direitos

“Without shame to fight for your rights”.

 

Sem Vergonha Trabalho

“Without shame to value your work”.

Sem vergonha de ser prostituta

“Without shame to be a prostitute”

Maria Sem Vergonha Camisinha

“Without shame to use condoms”

 

 


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Celebrating June 2: International Whores Day

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International Whores Day was declared by the prostitute rights movement to honor the 150 prostitutes who occupied the Saint-Nizier church in Lyon, France, on June 2nd, 1975. They were protesting against fines, unwarranted arrests, and the police’s disinterest and irresponsibility in solving murders and crimes committed against them.

The church leaders and Lyon population supported their protest and gave them protection and the occupation was transmitted through various communication means of the time all over the world. The women wanted their work to be considered “as useful to France as any other”. While the women occupied the church, 200 other prostitutes took to the streets in their cars distributing flyers that denounced that they were “victims of police persecution”, that made it impossible for them to work. The letter was sent to the then president of France, Giscard d’Estaing. The movement expanded to other cities in France, like Marselha, Montpellier, Grenoble and Paris, where colleagues also began a strike, yet on June 1oth, at 5 am, the women in the church were brutally removed by the police.

June 2nd was declared as International Whores Day to honor the French prostitutes and their courage to break the silence and denounce prejudice and discrimination towards prostitutes.
In Brazil, the Pará Group of Prostitutes (GEMPAC) is marking the day with incredible cultural and political interventions as part of PUTA DEI in Belém and here on our blog, we are celebrating it by launching a series of interviews with Gabriela Leite that were filmed in 2013 as part of the DVD extras of the film.  In the videos below, Gabriela talks about the history of the prostitute movement in Brazil and the key issues and challenges for advancing prostitutes rights today. We close this first series with a suggestions from Gabriela on how to support the movement. Check them out, share, and participate by supporting prostitute rights in your area of the world!

 


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Freeing Marcia Powell: events challenging prisons in Arizona

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This week people in Phoenix  will be remembering the death of Marcia Powell, a woman who was serving a 27 months sentence–more than 2 years–in an Arizona state prison for “solicitation” of prostitution. On May 19, 2009 corrections officers left Marcia in a metal cage in the burning sun without water or shade for more than four hours. Temperatures soared to more than 107 degrees fahrenheit (42 degrees celsius). After Marcia collapsed, she was taken to a hospital where the Director of Arizona Department of Corrections ordered that she be taken off life support in the early hours of May 20.

We honored that A KISS FOR GABRIELA will be part of the memorial for Marcia Powell on Saturday, 6 to 8pm, May 19 at Puente (1306 E Van Buren) in Phoenix Arizona. This family friendly event will also include a meal, conversation, music in addition to the film showing. Entrance is FREE. As the sun sets, people who knew and loved Marcia, people from communities affected by the prison industrial complex and advocates will call for an end to mass incarceration and oppression.  Co-sponsors of the memorial include Puente Arizona, Black Alliance for Just ImmigrationArizona Prison Watch, ACLU-AZ, Shadow Rock United Church of Christ, SWOP Tucson, SWOP Phoenix and many more.

Other events this week highlighting abuses perpetrated by the police and prisons include a screening of The House I Live In at Puente on Tuesday May 14 at 6 pm, a public protest about a Phoenix wide raid this week targeting sex workers at 4.30 pm Thursday May 16 and a community action planned by Arizona Prison Watch at the Department of Corrections on May 20, 2013.

Thank you kisses to Kansas, New York and Arizona!

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A Kiss for Gabriela at the Arizona International Film Festival.

A Kiss for Gabriela at the Arizona International Film Festival.

 

A KISS FOR GABRIELA is just back from an amazing three week tour in the United States for the film première and a series of fantastic screenings and discussions with activists, students, academics, and filmmakers that ended with a grand finale with seeing the name of the film on the Tucson, Arizona screening room’s famous marquee.

The trip started at the Kansas City FilmFest in Kansas City, MO, where it was part of the national and international short docs, and the director’s family was able to be present (Laura is also from Kansas!) and sent kisses to Gabriela.

We then continued to New York City, for a week of amazing university screenings at The New School for Social Research, Queens College, CUNY Law School, Princeton University, and finally Columbia University. Screenings featured journalist and Gabriela’s husband, Flavio Lenz from Brazil, director Laura Murray, and panels with researchers on gender and politics and activists from SWOP-NYC. Discussions about challenges faced by sex workers in the United States, activism in the country to advance sex workers rights, the political system in Brazil, the current conservative political climate in Brazil, connections between the women’s rights movement and the sex worker movement, and, of course, how Flavio and Gabriela first met made for a fun, informative and inspiring week. At Columbia, students and professors even took a moment to send birthday wishes to Gabriela, whose birthday was on April 22nd:


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uniondocs screening

The week in New York culimated with the amazing event, “A Kiss for Sex Workers Rights”, hosted by NYC sex worker rights organizations SWOP-NYC and SWANK.  Other films featured included SCARLET ROAD, ADVOCATING IN ALBANY and WHORE LOGIC. The panel after featured Flavio, Laura, the Incredible, Edible, Akynos (whose kick ass open letter is posted on this blog!), Audacia Ray from the RedUp team who shared about how to pressure Albany for the rights of sex workers. A full house, engaged audience,  and awesome space combined with stellar films and panelists made for one of the week’s best events!

 

After the screening, SWOP activists Brittany Wollman Love and Akynos sent a very special kiss to Gabriela:


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A Kiss for Gabriela_AIFF window

The following week, the film had its second US premiere in Tucson, Arizona, at the Arizona International Film Festival – a fantastic festival, with amazing films from all over the world. A KISS FOR GABRIELA was shown alongside another campaign film, MR CAO GOES TO WASHINGTON about the first Vietnamese American to be elected to US congress.

We were honored to have close family and prison abolitionists from The Arizona Prison Watch, who made the nearly three hour drive down to see the film, present! All joined in after to send a kiss for Gabriela under the marquee:

 


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Thank you to all who attended the sessions for the inspiration! Keep the kisses coming and we’ll do the same!!!

“I dare you to open your mind”: An Open Letter from the Incredible, Edible, Akynos to Rakhi Kumar

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This last week in the United States the appearance of Beyonce in a sheer, sequinned body suit has lead to an outpouring of discussion about what is appropriate clothing befitting a “role model”, a parent and a female performer. One writer, Rakhi Kumar, posted An Open Letter to Michelle Obama protesting the performer’s choice of costume (and challenging the respect shown to her by Michelle Obama) because “[v]ariations of Beyonce’s body suit can be found in brothels, strip clubs, and red light districts across the world.” As part of her critique of Beyonce’s clothing which included a discussion of how a tight-fit, heels and body hugging wear objectify women, Ms Kumar also recycled discredited information that “the average age of a girl when she is trafficked for sex for the first time is 13.” Our friend, fellow traveller, burlesque performer, rights advocate and writer The Incredible, Edible, Akynos pulls apart Kumar’s illogical connections between what women wear and how they live their sexuality, focuses in on the perils of further stigmatizing sex workers and even manages to squeeze in a shout out to Gabriela Leite. Ms Akynos has kindly agreed to allow us to share her entire essay here at A Kiss for Gabriela.

Dear Rakhi,

This is a long response to the article you recently wrote here —> http://shine.yahoo.com/beauty/open-letter-michelle-obama-beyonce-not-role-model-231900311.html. I wanted to shorten it, but I see no way to address all the discrepancies in your article otherwise.

Your open letter to Michelle Obama was offensive and degrading to multi-faceted female role models everywhere. It also displayed a flagrant ignorance of sex workers and sex-positive feminists who refuse to be sexual victims, and are clear on their own sexuality. I am honestly quite tired of reading the writing of women like you who believe they are doing the world good by spreading their propaganda against sex, aimed at women who do not live up to their utopia; women like you who really are victims of this patriarchal and sex-negative culture and cannot recognize it. You create a dichotomy between virgins and sluts that is shameful, as it pits women against each other – instead of recognizing that each one of us are unique individuals worthy of love and respect.

It’s one thing to attack Beyonce, but to discredit her many achievements in the entertainment industry by bringing down an entire group of [other] women is another. You see, the thing is that I am a sex worker, and a proud one at that. I openly discuss, organize and fight for the rights of myself and the men, women, trans persons, queer, lesbian and gay and bi-sexual people involved in this industry. And like Michelle and her daughters, myself and my comrades are sometimes mothers, daughters, sisters, friends and role models. To add to that I am a strong minded, self reliant, creative creature who has bred two well rounded children. My children read way above grade level, studied a second language, were on the honor roll, been working since they were 14; volunteered in their community and now they are on college tours. They did all this with their bad-ass Whore mother at their side. You dare bring up Beyonce’s costumes as something degrading only to be seen in brothels and strip clubs? It was strip clubs that helped me support my children for the majority of their younger years.

The music industry is no more misogynist than your degrading, ignorant comments. I am happy to see Beyonce become so comfortable in her sexuality that she can now step on stage wearing a sheer bodysuit with nipples showing [sic]. Personally I would have loved for the bodysuit to actually have been sheer. That particular costume is the worst use of sparkle I’ve ever seen. The design is tacky, it makes Beyonce’s breasts look like burnt pancakes. And what appears to be glitter on her nipples is a disgrace to the women in the burlesque community who would have put that glitter to better use. But I am not here to say Beyonce should fire her stylist (though it is highly recommended.) Nor am I here to defend her as being one of the best live entertainers this generation will have.

I am however questioning your connection to your own sexuality and your inability to grasp the concept that sex not only sells, it’s a powerful tool.  A tool that should not be condemned or vilified but instead embraced and understood. Your piece was incredibly difficult for me to read. It comes off as the rant of a bitter sexually displaced woman who has the gall to split the sisterhood by telling one group of women why they should look down on another group of women.

Yes, variations of Beyonce’s costume can be found in sex trade establishments world wide. But what is wrong with that exactly? For the record, and I am going to go out on a limb here, most women involved in these sex trades are there by choice. They are making their own rules and following their own feelings and dreams, regardless of whether a manager is present. Women like myself who are involved in the sex-for-sale business are not victims of this industry, we run this shit.

Another thing in your article that just boils my blood is the sex-trafficking statistic you threw out. Not merely because the number you presented is actually a myth fabricated by right-wing, sex deprived, patriarchal martyrs and angry prohibition first wave feminists. These erroneous statistics have been disproved by actual thorough research many times. By repeating these statistics you carelessly, and dangerously, give women the impression that somehow expressing their sexuality freely puts them at risk of being disrespected and abused. Your statements suggest to me that you:  a) Watch too many movies that do not accurately represent sex workers, adult entertainers and women, and b) Watch too many news programs who follow the Fox news format. If you don’t know what I mean by that, please ask someone. I also want to enlighten you, women are sexual beings that men respond to inappropriately. They need to appreciate our goddess sexuality without treating us like mere objects for their trivial uses. And it matters not what we wear or what our profession is. We get cat-called, targeted, sexually harassed, sexually abused, raped and experience so many acts of violence against us. The common denominator? No, not that we all dress provocatively, but that we all have vaginas. Quite frankly I’m concerned that you have unconsciously adopted a rapist mentality.

Just a thought: you’d be better off writing articles about women who are in seemingly socially acceptable relationships with men who are abusing them. Women are more likely to face abuse from their lovers, husbands, boyfriends, other male family members and friends, than from a man they met through the sex industry.

I also have to go a little further and ask you to never write another article that simplistically connects drug addiction to those involved in sex trade. Many musicians (think Whitney Houston, Janis Joplin, Amy Winehouse), actors, (think Charlie Sheen, John Belushi and Dorothy Dandridge). and athletes (Darryl Strawberry, Dwight Gooden, Chris Benoit), have all suffered from problems with drug addiction. Drug abuse can affect anyone, at anytime, in any business trade.  By associating drug addiction with sex workers you further stigmatize those suffering from the disease of addiction as well as sex workers who do not abuse drugs.

And a little more enlightenment: the women in this trade are quite educated. I personally hold two degrees, one in computer science and the other in the field of sexuality/sociology. I know many Phd’s and master degree holders who are or once were, escorts, strippers, dommes, erotic masseuses and so forth. Did you know there was a sex worker in Brazil, by the name of Gabriela Leite, who even ran for office? Or one of my favorite former sex workers, Dr. Brooke Magnanti – a scientist who worked as a high end prostitute while working on her Phd. Watch her flawless interview here —>https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=jZFDBkn9KB4

I would respect you if you were writing an article about women who allow themselves to be used for sex, instead of owning their sexuality. By ‘owning’, I mean using it as the powerful force it is and keeping themselves independent through the wise use of it. Instead you chime in on the rhetoric that a sexually liberated female is a deviant, that this attitude would only be embraced by a less intelligent minded woman, who would be better off aspiring to the bourgeois ideals of a sexually repressed culture.  A culture that is anti-femininity and disconnected from the feminine embrace.  A culture that is rape-ridden and pulls women away from their innate wild nature. One that does not allow each woman to be an individual with an independent mind. Your voice reminds me of the reason why Slut Walks take place globally. Your voice is a constant reminder that we live in a world where sexual liberation is perceived as some worthless, uncontrollable act, instead of being embraced as a powerful act of femininity, an indicator of independence. An indicator of a woman who will not be victimized by sex.

 

You are no role model either.  Your well-intentioned article reveals your sex-negative and moralistic views. Sex-negative because you don’t accept that a woman could bare breasts or sell sex and be a strong and positive female ideal. You are not a role model either because you’re blind to the ways in which you are a victim of patriarchy. To me, it is women like you who are the reason none of us can truly be whomever we want. You have a narrow view on what it is to be a woman. Women like you are blinded to the fact that sex worker rights are also a fight for your independent rights as a female human being. You believe that a woman with brains needs to be clothed head to toe and suffocate her sexuality in order to be taken seriously. You think deliberately displaying one’s sexuality is a demoralizing mindless act. And when I hear or read these pompous beliefs that come from another woman it just makes me shake my head in sadness. How can you be so naive as to believe that there is only one type of woman who makes this world positive, who sets trends and inspires? How can you be so ignorant as to disrespect and disregard the many women like me who fight for women like you? How dare you act as if the whole range of female role models can be wrapped in the little ball of your narrow beliefs. I dare you to open your mind.

-Akynos

 

A Kiss for Gabriela from Queens College

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On Tuesday, April 17th, A Kiss for Gabriela had a fantastic showing at Queens College.  Sponsored by the Latin American and Latino Studies Department, The Women’s Studies Department, and the student organization, GLASA – Gay Lesbian and Straight Alliance, we were all impressed with the students’ questions, interest, and energy. After the screening, several students took the time to send Gabriela a kiss! The wind was so strong, we think it may have even blown to her in Rio de Janeiro!

Check it out – and thank you to all at Queens College for such a fantastic event!


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Kisses from Princeton

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A KISS FOR GABRIELA screened at Princeton University last night in an event sponsored by the Comparative Literature and the Spanish and Portuguese Departments.

 

Inspired by the beauty of Princeton’s campus, journalist and Davida co-founder Flavio Lenz, and director Laura Murray took advantage to send a kiss to Gabriela themselves!


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Flavio a true journalist, filmed the “Making of” Laura’s kiss to Gabriela:


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After showing the film, Laura, Flavio, SWOP-NYC member Penelope Saunders and Mariana Assis discussed the importance of Gabriela’s candidacy, the barriers to winning when running for progressive politics in Brazil, the impact of feminist debates on sex worker rights, gender and sex work, the breadth of sex worker organizing in the US and the use of the word “puta.” Thank you friends at Princeton for your hospitality and for sending us a kiss!


 

A KISS FOR GABRIELA FROM THE FILM PREMIERE IN KANSAS CITY

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On April 10, 11th, and 13th, A KISS FOR GABRIELA premiered to at the Kansas City FilmFest. The film was incredibly well received, with many being inspired by Gabriela, her story, and interested in sex worker and women’s issues in Brazil and beyond. Enthusiastic festival goers were even inspired to send a kiss to Gabriela!