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Scarlet Alliance "Prison Officer or Sex Worker, both legal, both a job!" Dec 17 2009

Comments this week by Lisa Singh MP that violence is not acceptable anywhere in our communities, including the workplace are a timely reminder for Tasmanian sex workers that they too have the right to feel safe at work.

Thursday December 17th marks the 8th International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers. Tasmanian sex workers and supporters will mark the day with personal vigils and attendance to national solidarity events.

The Tasmanian community should be reminded that sex work in Tasmania is legal, and a legitimate choice of work. Some parts of the Tasmanian community maintain an out of date morality that equates sex workers with sin, crime and other social misconduct. The reality is that sex work is a legal profession that deserves the same workplace rights, support services and respect of other professions.

Assault is against the law – as is violence against sex workers.

Scarlet Alliance, the Australian Sex Workers Association, have a presence in Tasmanian and on Thursday December 17th we will stand in solidarity by protesting against the discrimination apparent in a recent NSW court case. The accused was charged with assault, with intent to have sexual intercourse and assault occasioning actual bodily harm to a sex worker. The accused admitted to using a "lock down maneuver" to pin the sex worker to the bed and putting a hand across the victims mouth, but was still found “not guilty.” This is an injustice and is discriminatory against sex workers – would it be acceptable if this happened to a prison officer, or those in other industries?

“On December 17, International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, sex workers are calling for justice outside the NSW courts. The outrage is a result of this case and the systemic inequity experienced by sex workers at the hands of police and the courts throughout Australia.,” said Janelle Fawkes, CEO. Tasmania sex workers will be demanding equal rights, fair rights and to treated no differently to other workers in the Tasmanian Community.

Prison Officer – Sex Worker – both legal, both a job! Contact Janelle Fawkes Scarlet Alliance CEO

Scarlet Alliance TasCAHRD 319 Liverpool Street Hobart, Tasmania