Argentinian sex workers take to the walls

A series of Argentinian advertisements for sex workers’ rights has been making a small but well-deserved splash. Prostitution is legal in Argentina but brothels are not, and, without labor protections, sex workers are vulnerable to physical violence and economic exploitation.

Commissioned by the Argentinian sex workers’ union, Asociación de Mujeres Meretrices de Argentina, the wheat paste ads cover the corners of buildings. A view from one side displays a woman in a suggestive pose, but the full image reveals a family scene: a mother leading her kids home in their school gear, or a baby pushed in a stroller. The text reminds us that “86% of sex workers are mothers. We need a law to regulate our work.”

I worry about the use of maternity to justify the need for protection: we hear often enough already that a woman’s worth is wholly dependent on her ability and willingness to bear and mother children. Strategically, though, the Ogilvy & Mather-designed campaign is pretty brilliant. We’ll keep you updated on any developments the ads inspire.

Images via BuzzFeed.

Sex workers' rights advertisement

More photos after the jump.

Sex workers' rights advertisement

Sex workers' rights advertisement

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Alexandra Brodsky is an editor at Feministing.com, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX, a national legal education campaign against campus gender-based violence. Alexandra has written for publications including the New York Times, the Atlantic, the Guardian, and the Nation, and she has spoken about violence against women and reproductive justice on MSNBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, FOX, and NPR. Through Know Your IX, she has organized with students across the country to build campuses free from discrimination and violence, developed federal policy on Title IX enforcement, and has testified at the Senate. At Yale Law, Alexandra focuses on antidiscrimination law and is a member of the Veterans Legal Services Clinic. Alexandra is committed to developing and strengthening responses to gender-based violence outside the criminal justice system through writing, organizing, and the law. Keep an eye out for The Feminist Utopia Project, co-edited by Alexandra and forthcoming from the Feminist Press (2015).

Alexandra Brodsky is an editor at Feministing.com, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX.

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  • http://feministing.com/members/jo11/ Joellart

    clever campaign