Last December, Team Solidarity was awarded a Knowledge Synthesis Grant on Gender-Based Violence by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and Women and Gender Equality Canada (WGEC). This grant enabled us to keep working on Beneath the Red Umbrella project, which involves translating academic research on the harms of criminalizing sex work and conflating it with trafficking, the rights of sex workers, and the governance of sex work in Canada and the US into accessible comic strips. We are very grateful to these agencies for having awarded us this grant.
The overarching problem our research seeks to address is the vulnerability of sex workers created in large part by criminal laws specific to their industry and certain anti-trafficking campaigns. Instead of conceptualizing sex workers as victims, however, we understand them as governance actors as they mobilize in “by, with, and for” civil society organizations. These organizations engage in day-to-day governance by providing sex-worker communities with support services, sharing resources to reduce harms, and advocating for policy change at local and national levels.
Please check out our final report Criminalization and Law Enforcement Campaigns as a Compounding Contributor to Gender-Based Violence against Racialized Sex Workers. And stay tuned for our hybrid academic monograph/graphic novel, which we hope will be forthcoming in 2024!