It’s crunch time for We Are Dancers! We have two weeks left to raise the money we need for our outreach project. So far we’ve made enough money to translate our website into Spanish, Russian, and Portuguese, and to create multilingual mini booklets for dancers… BUT we still need to raise the money to print and distribute those booklets to dancers across the city.
Our project has had a great response: Here’s a taste of some of the media coverage we’ve gotten so far:
Workplace Safety for Dancers
Cory Silverberg at About.com
Every year I say the same thing, and I think it bears repeating: sex workers are part of your life. Even if you don’t know it, they are. And this year, if you aren’t going to attend a December 17th event, but you’d like to do something or inform yourself a bit more about a part of your world that you may not know much about, check out this great project, Dancers Are Special, from a group called We Are Dancers NYC. It’s a print resource, a sort of know-your-rights-workplace-safety- manual that they want to make available in multiple languages. It may seem simple but can make all kinds of small differences.
‘We Are Dancers’ Aims to Organize the Excluded
Melissa Gira Grant at In These Times
So where can dancers who want to organize begin? As is the case for many service workers, the first step for dancers is to learn what rights they already have. But dancers may need different or additional resources than labor organizers can offer them. Rather than view this as an obstacle, We Are Dancers, a project led by current and former dancers in New York City, is using it an entry point for successful outreach.
Organized Labor’s Newest Heroes: Strippers
Melissa Gira Grant at The Atlantic
If you can imagine and appreciate the obstacles workers at megachains face in fighting for fair wages, now imagine what the strip club picket line looks like. The small pool of dancers who will risk their jobs over workplace organizing is further limited by what dancers can risk outing themselves to their friends, family and others as sex workers in the process. The price of speaking out isn’t just the “whore stigma” that all sex workers face; it could also mean discrimination at dancers’ other jobs or future jobs (thanks, Google), or could provide a bogus rationale for a dancer to lose custody of her children to a former partner or the state. It could even put dancers on the vice unit’s radar, depending where they work and how aggressive anti-prostitution policing is in their community.