11-B : Sarah Patterson: Sex Work

In Side B of Episode 11, Sarah Patterson and I discussed the myriad motivations of people in the sex trades. Whether you work on the street or in a dungeon, on camera or in a private room, with your voice or with your body, every sex worker faces staggering stigma against the legitimacy of the labor they do in exchange for the things they need. What happens when the need to make a living intersects with human sexual desire? How do those needs jive, and how do they clash? Sarah and I speak from our own experiences in the industry, as well as what we’ve learned from our various communities.


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Sarah Elspeth Patterson has been an advocate for the rights of people in the sex trades for almost a decade. An educator by trade and a writer when driven to it, she lives and works in New York City. She is a former columnist for $pread Magazine, and has written for On the Issues and RH Reality Check. She is currently the Executive Director of Persist Health Project, an organization that links sex workers, trafficking survivors and others in the sex trade with the health services they need, while educating their health care providers on what they want. All opinions expressed here are her own.