Trans Sex Workers And Activists You Should Know About

by Bea Dux

The news has been filled with traumatic and hideous events recently. The transgender community has sadly not been absent from the headlines and I’m seeing too many people lacking compassion and/or understanding when it comes to the violence against our transgender brothers and sisters.

Hopefully you’ll already be aware of incredible public figures like Laverne Cox who are literally changing the way mainstream media see trans women. Along with Munroe Bergdorf, who uses her large platform to help amplify the voices of their peers whilst reminding the world that the fight for LGBTQIA+ rights is firmly tied to sex worker rights. 

When writing this blog, I definitely found myself tip toeing around the edges of a deep hole of hatred. The violence and injustice transgender people face is hideous, they are often ignored by law enforcement and/or left in reports as nameless victims. I refuse to fall into discussing injustice with tears stinging my eyes and venom on my tongue when there are SO many transgender sex workers and activists to be celebrated! So let’s get on to celebrating them.

Roberta Perkins

Roberta was an Australian sociologist and writer. They were also an incredibly vocal transgender rights and sex worker rights activist. Roberta left an incredible legacy with several books and academic papers highlighting to lives of transgender sex workers. AND she established the first assistance center for transgender people in Australia. Please read more about her and her incredible work here:

TS Candii 

As a sex worker, vocal political activist, and public speaker, TS Candii is taking her badassery to the next level in producing a documentary called “Policing Our Bodies” which I for one, am looking forward to viewing. She has been at the very front of MANY a protest and march as well as organising several financial funds for start ups and support systems. Black Trans News being but one of them:

Lorena Borjas

Lorena was a much loved mentor and ferocious champion for the community of Latina transgender sex workers for almost two decades. In more recent years, she was known for her dedication to immigrants - it has been said by friends that despite any hardships she faced in her own life, her love and compassion for others always came first. Sadly, the world lost Lorena this year to Covid-19. After reading about her passion and heart, I feel truly inspired. She was not a woman to sit down and accept injustice. What an incredible person.

Angelica Ross

You may recognise this name from the hit Netflix show ‘Pose’, in which Angelica features - but DID YOU KNOW HOW AWESOME SHE IS IN REAL LIFE? My favourite and most recent example of pure fucking excellence was her meeting with Kamala Harris. Kamala has been an enemy of sex workers for her past support of the FOSTA/SESTA bill. However, in a caption Angelica posted to Instagram under a photo of her, she said: “In this conversation and several following this one, I called @kamalaharris in to talk about her record on trans people and sex workers and non violent offenders. She acknowledged her role in collaborating with the state that destroyed many Black lives and shared the moment she realized how she could use her position to change the system while still protecting us from violent offenders, especially those most vulnerable to domestic and intimate partner violence. I talked about trans women being out in men’s prisons and with men in ICE detention centers. I spoke on the need to decriminalise sex work to empower both cis and trans women. This was not just a photo op for me, this was an opportunity to truly speak truth to power. The ripple effect of this moment is evidence to me that I can indeed effect change. We all can.” You can see the IG post here:

SX Noir

SX is an outspoken unapologetic thot. You read that right. In fact, SX is a ‘a thoful thot leader’, which honestly just makes me wanna be their friend. I wanna be a thot leader! SX is a pioneer of working fucking hard. Between their website and podcast featuring discussions on sex, relationships, health, sex technology and culture, SX is also the Vice President of the Women of Sex Technology, championing the intersection of sex work and sex tech. SX Noir deserves the biggest Bad Bitch badge. Wear it with pride, sis. 

Sources and more information:

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