How Georgia’s Sex Offender Registry Traps People in Debt and Homelessness
I was arrested in 2011 after engaging in sex work to survive and later forced to register as a sex offender. Since then, social stigma, footage laws, and crushing monthly court debts have made it difficult to get back on my own two feet and succeed after prison.
The Pandemic Prompted Marilyn Mosby to Stop Prosecuting Low-Level Crimes. Will Other D.A.s Follow?
Prosecutors across the country have begun declining low-level cases in an effort to reduce racial inequity and to slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
New York Moves A Step Closer To Decriminalizing Sex Work
After organizing to repeal the “walking while trans” ban, advocates in the state—and around the country—are looking ahead to the next fight.
‘It’s Feudalism, Pure Exploitation’
The Doe Fund says it pays homeless and formerly incarcerated people New York City’s minimum wage of $15 per hour. But the nonprofit charges weekly fees that can drive their wages below the federal minimum of $7.25.
Transgender Sex Workers in New York City Struggle to Survive the Pandemic
Advocates say the “progressive” city has left them to die.
Florida’s HIV Criminalization Laws Target Sex Workers. A Reform Bill Offers Little Relief.
67% of people arrested under state laws that criminalize HIV exposure and transmission are sex workers. But new legislation meant to modernize these laws would retain harsh penalties against them.
In A Florida County, Sex Workers Are Ensnared In ‘Trafficking’ Raids
Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister’s stings, conducted under the guise of targeting human trafficking, netted the largest number of arrests there since 2008. Sex workers say the operations put them at risk.
Harris County D.A. Candidate Audia Jones Says She Won’t Prosecute Sex Work
The incumbent in the race, Jones’s former boss Kim Ogg, will not support a blanket refusal to prosecute sex workers, her office says.
Florida Sheriffs Arrest Hundreds In ‘Trafficking’ Stings
Offices across the state conduct operations under the guise of saving victims of human trafficking. But the vast majority of people detained, including sex workers, are charged with prostitution.
Trans Woman’s Death in Rikers is Still a Mystery. But Why Was She There At All?
Though little is known about how Layleen Polanco died, advocates say her story highlights New York City’s flawed approach to criminal justice.
Women Describe How A Columbus Vice Cop Pressured Them to Trade Sex for Rent
Andrew Mitchell, a former officer in Ohio who was recently indicted on charges he kidnapped women and forced them to have sex for their freedom, will soon face a grand jury for killing Donna Dalton during a prostitution arrest.
Florida Woman Faced 10 Years For ‘Meth’ That Was ‘Just a Rock’
A scandal of falsified drug arrests is spreading at a Florida sheriff’s office that has also spent more than $1.33 million settling excessive force lawsuits and is at the center of the increasingly troubled Robert Kraft case.
‘The Police Act Like We Are Nothing’
A new coalition of people in the sex trades wants New York to become the first state to fully decriminalize their work.
If Cyntoia Brown Can Be Released from Prison, Why Not Trafficking Survivor Alexis Martin?
Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam just granted clemency to Brown, who was forced to trade sex for money, but Ohio’s governor declined this week to do the same for Martin.
The Appeal’s Favorite Stories of 2018
Our staff picks 12 stories worth reading (or rereading) before the new year.
In Allegheny County, People Arrested With Cell Phones Can Be Charged With ‘Possessing Instruments of Crime’
Advocates say these charges endanger sex workers and urge the police to stop using them.
Suit Filed by Strip Club Workers in Columbus Sheds Light on Troubled Vice Squad
The women, who were arrested alongside Stormy Daniels in July, allege that they were smeared by arresting officers, but they’re just the latest to raise concerns.
Inside NY Courts Where Sex Workers are ‘Painted as Victims and Treated as Criminals’
Two new reports challenge the efficacy and ethics of prostitution diversion programs in New York City and nationwide.
How decriminalizing sex work became a campaign issue in 2018
State Senate candidate Julia Salazar explains how sex workers’ rights is a key part of reforming criminal justice in New York.
Columbus Officer Was Under Investigation When He Shot and Killed Donna Dalton
Community outrage mounts over Officer Andrew Mitchell’s killing of Dalton during an attempted prostitution arrest.
Broad Anti-Trafficking Law Faces Its First Constitutional Challenge
Human rights groups, sex worker rights activists, a digital archive and others say they are already facing censorship.
Queens DA releases final report on massage worker’s death, calling sex work ‘degrading and humiliating’
As anticipated, district attorney finds no misconduct in raid that led to Yang Song’s fatal fall.
New Evidence in the Death of a Queens Massage Worker
Surveillance video sheds some light on the police raid that killed Yang Song last year while, advocates say, the raids continue.
‘Whores Will Rise’
As part of International Whores' Day, hundreds gathered in New York City to protest new anti-sex work laws.
Announcing The Appeal Podcast
Our debut episodes feature Josie Duffy Rice on prosecutors and Melissa Gira Grant on criminalizing sex work.
The Appeal Podcast Episode 2: The Misplaced Sanctimony of Criminalizing Sex Work
With Melissa Gira Grant, senior staff reporter at The Appeal.
The New Orleans Police Raid That Launched A Dancer Resistance
From local charities, to the editorial pages, to city politicians, New Orleans strip clubs were blamed for human trafficking, leading to abusive police raids – harming the dancers they claimed they were protecting, and pushing the dancers to fight back.
Tennessee Prosecutor Wants to Teach Men to Stop Buying Sex
Do these so-called “john schools” actually hurt women more than help them?