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Video and creative projects by PJ Starr. Works in progress, retrospective, eye-spy with my little eye.

PJ Starr is a sex worker rights activist and friend of transgenders everywhere.

Archive

Jul
22nd
Sun
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Sex workers and their allies staged a protest during a press conference held on the opening day of the International AIDS Conference. More than 20 protesters rushed to the stage during the press conference chanting, “No drug users, no sex workers, no I… A… C…” Many sex workers and drug users have been unable to enter the United States due to immigration restrictions on anyone who may have used drugs or engaged in sex work.
Here activists walk through the halls of the conference after the protest. 

Sex workers and their allies staged a protest during a press conference held on the opening day of the International AIDS Conference. More than 20 protesters rushed to the stage during the press conference chanting, “No drug users, no sex workers, no I… A… C…” Many sex workers and drug users have been unable to enter the United States due to immigration restrictions on anyone who may have used drugs or engaged in sex work.

Here activists walk through the halls of the conference after the protest. 

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Sex workers and their allies staged a protest during press conference held on the opening day of the International AIDS Conference. More than 20 protesters rushed to the stage during the press conference chanting, “No drug users, no sex workers, no I… A… C…” Many sex workers and drug users have been unable to enter the United States due to immigration restrictions on anyone who may have used drugs or engaged in sex work.
After the action protestors carried their signs to other parts of the building to inform arriving participants of the lack of representation at the 2012 International AIDS Conference. 

Sex workers and their allies staged a protest during press conference held on the opening day of the International AIDS Conference. More than 20 protesters rushed to the stage during the press conference chanting, “No drug users, no sex workers, no I… A… C…” Many sex workers and drug users have been unable to enter the United States due to immigration restrictions on anyone who may have used drugs or engaged in sex work.

After the action protestors carried their signs to other parts of the building to inform arriving participants of the lack of representation at the 2012 International AIDS Conference. 

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Sex workers and their allies staged a protest at a 4 pm press conference held on the opening day of the International AIDS Conference. More than 20 protesters rushed to the stage during the press conference chanting, “No drug users, no sex workers, no I… A… C…” Many sex workers and drug users have been unable to enter the United States due to immigration restrictions on anyone who may have used drugs or engaged in sex work.

Sex workers and their allies staged a protest at a 4 pm press conference held on the opening day of the International AIDS Conference. More than 20 protesters rushed to the stage during the press conference chanting, “No drug users, no sex workers, no I… A… C…” Many sex workers and drug users have been unable to enter the United States due to immigration restrictions on anyone who may have used drugs or engaged in sex work.

Jul
19th
Thu
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Sex Workers and Allies Protest Efforts to Shut Down Backpage from PJ Starr on Vimeo.

On June 20, 2012 people against sex work protested in front of the Village Voice, demanding that they shut down Backpage’s Adult Services Section. SWOP-NYC and SWANK—local organizations representing sex workers and their allies—counter-protested noting that closing Backpage would increase marginalization of people in the sex trade and make anti-trafficking efforts more difficult. SWOP-NYC and SWANK’s action caps off a full week of stories and posts on the swop-nyc.org website talking about the importance of online advertising to different communities and the dangers of increasing criminalization.

Jun
26th
Sun
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Didn’t think that my heels were high at all but after more than 40 blocks of marching, glittering, signing and umbrella twirling for sex worker rights at NYC Gay Pride I needed a box of bandaids. More at: www.flickr.com/photos/pjstarr/sets/72157626931673017/

Didn’t think that my heels were high at all but after more than 40 blocks of marching, glittering, signing and umbrella twirling for sex worker rights at NYC Gay Pride I needed a box of bandaids. More at: www.flickr.com/photos/pjstarr/sets/72157626931673017/

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I adorned a friend’s legs because she did not have a costume.

I adorned a friend’s legs because she did not have a costume.

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Last year we were followed by “16 pound balls.” This year we were stalked by a giant penis. It was pretty difficult not to have it in the photos.

Last year we were followed by “16 pound balls.” This year we were stalked by a giant penis. It was pretty difficult not to have it in the photos.

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The feedback from the crowd is so wonderful at Pride. Sex workers and allies from the audience jump up and yell when they see us: one young man climbed up a lamp-post to yell out his support and wave a flag. Many women who saw the “outlaw poverty, not prostitution” sign warmed to the statement. “That’s what I am talking about!” called out one woman with kids. “Keep holding up that sign.” We have more community support than we know. We have to keep on moving forward for rights.

The feedback from the crowd is so wonderful at Pride. Sex workers and allies from the audience jump up and yell when they see us: one young man climbed up a lamp-post to yell out his support and wave a flag. Many women who saw the “outlaw poverty, not prostitution” sign warmed to the statement. “That’s what I am talking about!” called out one woman with kids. “Keep holding up that sign.” We have more community support than we know. We have to keep on moving forward for rights.

Mar
18th
Fri
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86 the Violence

Sex worker rights advocates gathered in Union Square at 2.30 pm today for a public art action in support of recommendation 86 which was recently accepted by the US government as part of the Universal Periodic Review at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. Recommendation 86 requires the that US government ensure sex workers’ access to public services and actions to prevent violence and human rights abuses of sex workers.

We prepared for the event once we managed to placate an anxiously Parks and Recreations official that we would not be doing any public tattooing (????)) by symbolically gagging three activists. They then stood silently in perilously high heels for 86 minutes beginning at 3 pm.

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The main event. Three activists standing bound and gagged to highlight the oppression faced by sex workers.

The main event. Three activists standing bound and gagged to highlight the oppression faced by sex workers.

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At first many people thought that we we protesting against prostitution (rather than against the human rights abuses of sex workers). The bound and gagged “targets” needed some more explanation. We scribbled some political messages on some cardboard and the “targets” stood on them to keep them from blowing away in the wind.

At first many people thought that we we protesting against prostitution (rather than against the human rights abuses of sex workers). The bound and gagged “targets” needed some more explanation. We scribbled some political messages on some cardboard and the “targets” stood on them to keep them from blowing away in the wind.

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Folks with red umbrellas passed out literature. One advocate said that 9 out of 10 people “got the political arguments.”

Folks with red umbrellas passed out literature. One advocate said that 9 out of 10 people “got the political arguments.”

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Our action was photographed from every angle by excited passersby and by the New York Times.

Our action was photographed from every angle by excited passersby and by the New York Times.

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SWOP NYC member with the trio in the background.

SWOP NYC member with the trio in the background.