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  Thursday, Dec 14, 2017 



International Day of Violence Against Sex Trade Workers December 17

By Laura Dilley, PACE


nternational Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, spearheaded by Dr. Annie Sprinkle and sex work rights activists in 2003, takes place annually on December 17 and seeks to raise public awareness of the violence committed against sex workers worldwide.


This day draws attention to the devastating impacts of stigma and criminalization on the safety of Sex Workers. In cities across the world, Sex Workers and their allies join together to focus attention on the continued violence and inequities faced by sex workers in hopes of fostering change and ending violence.

Misunderstanding around what sex work is and who engages in it contributes to Sex Workers’ marginalization and leads directly to violence. This marginalization is also reinforced by social systems that make it difficult for sex workers to access support.

“Stigma surrounding sex work as perpetuated through the media, criminalization and failure to recognize sex work as work creates conditions that fuel violence and undermine Sex Workers’ safety.” Laura Dilley, Executive Director
PACE Society, a peer-driven Sex Worker rights organization, partnered with Vancouver-based writer Amber Dawn in 2017 (September 15 to December 15) to deliver a series of writing workshops for Sex Workers with the funding from a City of Vancouver Community Arts grant.


This initiative recognized the need for safe spaces for Sex Workers to tell their own stories and led to the publication of a chapbook, Sex Worker Wisdom, highlighting the stories of 21 Sex Workers.

“Too often, our stories are misrepresented or oversimplified in order to be contained in academic research and statistical findings, police reports and clinical texts, theoretical debates and sensationalized media.” Amber Dawn
As part of International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers on December 17, 2017, PACE will be publicly launching the chapbook during an intimate night of Sex Worker storytelling at their location at 148 W Hastings St (Vancouver, BC). The chapbooks will be available for purchase at the event.  Proceeds from the chapbook support PACE Society’s peer-driven services for Sex Workers.


About PACE Society
PACE Society is a Sex Worker driven non-profit operating in Vancouver’s DTES. PACE provides front-line support services; advocacy and education based on a harm reduction model for Sex Workers based on Sex Workers self identified needs. Our organization is committed to social justice and our services reflect the intersecting social determinants of health of the people we serve. As an organization we are committed to improving the lives of Sex Workers and highlighting the various physical, environmental and structural barriers that shape their lives and reinforce violence and postionality.

This year’s event will be held on Sunday, December 17, 2017 from 7pm - 9pm at PACE Society 148 W. Hastings St., Vancouver, BC. Link to event here.


For more information, visit here or e-mail here.




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