Blog

Why does the left want prostitution to be ‘a job like any other’?

The go-to perspective on prostitution from many progressives in Canada these days seems to be a fairly hard and fast vote for decriminalization or legalization. Even many of our beloved East Vancouver lefties  seem convinced that the most progressive position to take is one of ‘sex as work’, arguing that debates around prostitution should prioritize labour rights, allowing women to come out from the underground and ‘into the light’ as free and autonomous workers. The gaps in this logic are all at once complex and simple. While I have long been a supporter of labour rights, of unions, and have counted myself as a fighting member of the working class who has waivered somewhere between socialism and Marxism from the moment I understood the concept of class struggle, I’ve...
Continue Reading »
Blog

Sexual Assaults in Downtown Eastside Shelter Brings to Light Desperate Need for 24 Hour Safe Space for Women

This press release has been reprinted with the permission of Battered Women Support Services: For immediate release Women Respond to Sexual Assaults in Downtown Eastside Church Shelter While Shelter and City of Vancouver Ignore Reports Press Conference on Monday, February 28, 2011 at 11 am. 515-119 West Pender St (Vancouver, BC)  A coalition of women and women’s organization is acting quickly to address reports of sexual assaults of women in a Downtown Eastside shelter.  In January 2011 it was identified that women were being sexually assaulted by men at First United Church co-ed shelter located at Gore and Hastings.  In 2010, Vancouver Police Department confirmed six sexual assaults had been reported at the shelter. Frontline workers had been receiving reports directly from women as well over the past several...
Continue Reading »
Blog

I don't want to silence anyone, I just refuse to hear you: Pamela Masik's (continued) silencing of Aboriginal Women's Groups

Just a quick update to elaborate on my post, written back in October, around the controversy surrounding Pamela Masik’s ‘The Forgotten’ in light of the recent cancellation of her exhibit by The Museum of Anthropology. Regardless of the fact that Masik most certainly is aware of who it is that has opposed the exhibition and why it is that ‘The Forgotten’ and Masik is receiving this criticism, she went on CBC’s As It Happens this morning (listen to part 3 here) and denied having any knowledge of where these criticisms and protests are coming from; completely erasing those she claims she wants ‘no longer to be silenced’. She believes that the canceling of the exhibition represents society’s continued marginalization and silencing of Aboriginal women and yet refuses to acknowledge...
Continue Reading »
Blog

Breaking news! White lady’s voice hijacked by women from the DTES. Why won’t they just shut up and let her help them?

I. just. can’t. even. I am a little behind on the news here, so please accept my apologies to those who have already been angry, and have perhaps moved on since then. Just recently this story was relayed to me by a prof, who was actually in attendance at a conference called “Absence, Silence, Action, and Voice in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside” at SFU back in August. A guest speaker at the conference was local artist, Pamela Masik. A woman who, as far as I can tell from her website….loves to look at pictures of herself. So much so that she tends to stick herself right into shots of her artwork. In the most humble of ways. Like right in front of the faces of the women she supposedly intends...
Continue Reading »