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FKA Twigs Launches GoFundMe for Sex Worker Mutual Aid

FKA Twigs has created a GoFundMe for sex workers facing an income loss from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The singer and performer launched the fundraiser in partnership with several sex worker-led organizations, including Sex Worker Advocacy and Resistance Movement (SWARM), Lysistrata and East London Strippers Collective. FKA Twigs kicked the GoFundMe off on Tuesday afternoon with her own donation of £10,000 (roughly equal to $13,000), and since then it has raised an additional £4,839, making it about halfway toward its £30,000 goal.

“I was 19 when I learned my first pole move; I learned a back hook spin from a stripper when I was working as a hostess in a gentleman’s club,” she wrote on Instagram. “For those of you who don’t know, hostessing is when one person pays another person for their time, anything from a conversation over dinner to sex work, and the club gets a cut of the fee. My lived experience as a very young woman in these environments has not only informed the strong and formidable woman that I am today, but also a lot of my work as a music and visual artist — sometimes even subconsciously.”

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i was 19 when i learnt my first pole move, i learnt a back hook spin from a stripper when i was working as a hostess in a gentleman’s club. for those of you who don’t know, hostessing is when one person pays another person for their time, anything from a conversation over dinner to sex work, and the club gets a cut of the fee. my lived experience as a very young woman in these environments has not only informed the strong and formidable woman that i am today, but also a lot of my work as a music and visual artist – sometimes even subconsciously. i feel like now is the time for me to step forward, pay respect, and shine a light on the challenges facing sex workers, especially during these uncertain times. sex workers I know and have met have discipline, craft, talent and work ethic – not only do they deserve better long-term, but their income has been wiped out by the lockdown and many are invisible to the financial aid available to others. there’s a bigger journey in challenging public attitudes, tackling stigma, and fighting for rights and protections – but today I’m inviting you to join me in helping with cash donations to SWARM, Lysistrata and ELSC. these organisations are providing direct financial support to strippers and sex workers, we’ve kicked off the the fund with £10,000 and you can donate at https://www.gofundme.com/f/sexworkermutualaidfunds this week, SWARM @swarmhive Lysistrata @lysistratamccf and ELSC @ethicalstripper will also be taking over my social media channels.

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She continued: “I feel like now is the time for me to step forward, pay respect and shine a light on the challenges facing sex workers, especially during these uncertain times. Sex workers I know and have met have discipline, craft, talent and work ethic — not only do they deserve better long-term, but their income has been wiped out by the lockdown and many are invisible to the financial aid available to others.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has left many sex workers struggling, due to widespread unemployment, shuttered businesses and nightlife, and an economic recession. Later this week, members of SWARM, Lysistrata and the East London Strippers Collective will take over FKA Twigs’ social media accounts to spread awareness of the challenges faced by sex workers during the pandemic and to share the realities of their work.

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